Studies reveal that depletion of underground water has reached critical levels, but nowadays it’s a different story:Water everywhere! [Archives:2003/659/Front Page]

August 14 2003

Sana'a, August 12 – Despite the fact that Yemen is suffering from severe water shortage, whoever looks at Sana'a these days would see something else. It is water, and water everywhere!

Sana'a drowning?
The floods in the capital and other areas in the country caused a lot of damage to roads, construction sites, and even ruined houses. But yet again, in those very houses, water is scarce and people are complaining.
“We see water everywhere we go, yet we do not find a drop coming out of the water tap. Isn't this strange enough.” asked one of the Yemeni citizens, who had to almost swim through the 'lake' to get to the other side of the street.
In the meantime, Yemen and Sana'a in particular are facing a potential water crisis ahead despite the fact that you can see water wherever you go. “Can't this water be utilized? Can't people benefit from it instead of letting it go in such a manner?” people ask.

Severe water shortage
In an interview to Yemen Times, Minister of Water and Environment describes the situation of water in Yemen as 'critical'. Yemen is facing a very serious water shortage problem that could have long-term implications if not dealt with seriously. Some even go further by claiming that Yemen will definitely face a 'water catastrophe'
According to the minister, Dr. Mohammed al-Iryani, the estimated per capita availability of renewable water resources is only 150 cubic meters.
It represents 2% of the international average which is 6,500 cubic meters. The figure for the Middle East and North Africa region is 1,250 cubic meters per capita. He also revealed that the water shortages are reaching emergency levels in some areas. Furthermore, according to a 2001 government report, there are absolute water shortages in Taiz and Sana'a.
At the same time, water consumption continues to rise yearly, and now it is well above renewable water resources. Rainfall ranges between 50 and 200 millimeters in most of the areas, rising to 800 millimeters per annum in exceptional cases in some areas.
More on the water crisis on Health Page