Transboundary Cooperation on Freshwater in Africa

PublicationDescription:
Water and Sanitation Brief / Availability of, and access to, water resources have a strong bearing on populations and ecosystems as well as on livelihoods, economic growth and overall development in Africa. Although Sub-­Saharan Africa on average is well-­endowed with water resources, these are unevenly distributed, highlighting the need for good water governance. To promote poverty alleviation and inclusive growth, it is important that water resource development takes place in the context of Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM) in the supervision and distribution of freshwater resources. However, water is already scarce in some parts of the continent – the annual water availability is 4008 m3 per capita, which is below the global annual of 6498 m3 -­ making it difficult to meet the human rights to food, water and sanitation, maintain ecosystem services, and even challenging peace in the region.Availability of, and access to, water resources have a strong bearing on populations and ecosystems as well as on livelihoods, economic growth and overall development in Africa. Although Sub-­Saharan Africa on average is well-­endowed with water resources, these are unevenly distributed, highlighting the need for good water governance. To promote poverty alleviation and inclusive growth, it is important that water resource development takes place in the context of Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM) in the supervision and distribution of freshwater resources. However, water is already scarce in some parts of the continent – the annual water availability is 4008 m3 per capita, which is below the global annual of 6498 m3 -­ making it difficult to meet the human rights to food, water and sanitation, maintain ecosystem services, and even challenging peace in the region.