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Academy of Science of Afghanistan organizes seminar on water management

Avoiding water confrontations

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KABUL: The Academic of Science of Afghanistan has organized a one day seminar to discus Afghanistan water management and to deal with the issue form knowledgeable perspectives

The seminar titled “Afghanistan’s Water Management and Regional Diplomacy,” was attended by different governmental officials, university teachers, media representatives and researchers.

The keynote speaker, Dr. Abdul Zahir Shakib, the caretaker of Academic of Science of Afghanistan, said such a seminar was amid discussions about water management in the country.

“Water is an important resource that could possibly impact the diplomacy arena of the countries, and Afghanistan has enough water resources that need to be managed.

Rivers across Afghanistan have been divided into five zones, and its water flow affecting Afghanistan’s relation with its neighboring countries, he said.

“Amo, Hariroad, Murghab, Helmand, Kabul and the northern zone rivers each of them have its economic value.”

Afghanistan could become a good agrarian and energy producer country once its water is properly controlled and managed. “This seminar will focus on how to manage water resources and also to use the experience of others canvasser in the area.”

Farid Ahmad Azizi, reading the National Water Affairs Regulation Authority Director’s statement, based on latest information Afghanistan has 69 billion meters cubic underground and surface waters annually, including 53 billion meters cubic surface and 16 billion underground waters. “Afghanistan has the capacity of 23mw electricity production and irrigating of seven million hectares of lands,” the statement reads.

However, still the water flows to neighboring countries and Afghanistan make less use of it.

Besides managing water, awareness programs to educate people are vital to utilize water in a better way, he said. “The National Water Affairs Regulation Authority Director in coordination with other related organizations will work further in the aspect.”

A researcher, Dr. Fazelullah Akhtar talking to the seminar said water is still being used ineffectively by people at homes, in businesses areas and in farms, which will negatively affect water resources. “High population, return of Afghan refugees from neighboring countries, will also result in using more waters.” Lack of a proper system for utilizing water by the people as well as in the farms, scarcity of a clear data about water resources and conflict has caused other challenges in this element. 

Despite enough water resources, Afghanistan still has to reach self-reliance in the aspect grain, he complained. “Water resources must be managed properly and it should be distributed as required in each season to the farmers.”

He asserted that water should also be divided in balance to each area in order to have better progress. “Contamination of water is another challenge in the country.”

He called for coordination to be further strengthened among different related originations in a bid to manage water in the best way.

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