Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Hydropolitical Baseline of the Upper Jordan River

My friend Karim worked on this report.

The Association of the Friends of Ibrahim Abd el Al
<http://www.ibrahim-abdelal.org/> is pleased to announce the publication
of the /Hydropolitical Baseline of the Upper Jordan River
<http://www.uea.ac.uk/watersecurity/publications>/, a study undertaken
by the UEA Water Security Research Centre.

 The /Hydropolitical Baseline of the Upper Jordan River/ study examines
the history and current politics of water use in the basin –
specifically the Liddan, Banias and Hasbani sub-basins. An
interdisciplinary lens interprets the archives of French and British
authorities, Lebanese and Israeli river flow data, news media,
interviews and unpublished official reports. Finding the distribution of
the transboundary flows to be asymmetric in the extreme, the study
investigates how the inequity has been achieved and is maintained. It
also situates the Lebanon-Israel water conflict within the broader
political conflict, and examines the effect of the 2006 war on water
resources and water infrastructure. The study thus fills an important
gap with significance to the wider Jordan River Basin (including Syria,
Jordan and the West Bank and Gaza) – and lays the baseline for the
river’s equitable use.

Amongst many other findings, the study:

   * Clearly establishes the physical basis for the Liddan as an
     international river;
   * Identifies significant knowledge gaps in the public domain of
     hydrology, hydro-geology, and water use;
   * Finds that transboundary groundwater flows are of greater volume
     than surface water flows;
   * Provides an estimate of use of the Upper Jordan River basin
     (surface water and groundwater, in million cubic metres per year):
     Syria – 0, Lebanon – about 11, Israel – 360 to 520;
   * Shows how control of water resources can be maintained /with/ (the
     Golan – Banias and groundwater recharge of the Liddan) or
     /without/ (e.g. the upper Hasbani) the control of territory, and
     other aspects of hydro-hegemony;
   * Identifies established and emerging narratives constructed about
     the flows, and discusses the implications of an Israeli discourse
     linking water with state security on resolution of the water conflict;
   * Evaluates the importance of control over water resources with the
     Israeli occupation of Ghajar and the Cheba’a Farms, alongside
     military and religious motives;
   * Documents the extensive damage to water resources and water
     infrastructure during the 2006 war, in violation of the rules of war;
   * Finds that mediation by the international diplomatic community
     during the 2002 Wazzani Springs dispute tended towards conflict
     management, and away from conflict resolution; and
   * Discusses the extent to which International Water Law may form the
     basis of equitable use and resolution of the water conflict.

 The Executive Summary
Main Study
and Annexes
are available on the website of the UEA Water Security Research Centre.

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