Türkiye to be water-poor country, warns expert

In the next 20 years, Türkiye will move out of the list of the "water-stressed" countries and join the group of nations classified as "water-poor" countries, according to the Turkish Water Institute (SUEN), a member of the World Water Council continuing its activities under the Agriculture and Forestry Ministry.

"According to the State Hydraulic Works [DSİ] data, the annual usable water amount per capita in Türkiye is 1,346 m3," said Tuğba Evrim Maden, an expert from SUEN, reiterating that Türkiye is a water-stressed country.

"Based on the data of the Turkish Statistical Institute (TÜİK), the population of Türkiye will reach 100 million in 2023, and the annual amount of water per capita will have fallen below 1000 m3. According to these numbers, Türkiye will be classified as a water-poor country in the next 20 years," Maden said.

With the effects of rapid population growth and climate change, there has been a serious decrease in the amount of water per capita, which is the measurement tool of water richness, according to Maden.

However, the need for water in Turkey continues to increase due to climate change and other factors, Maden added.

"This year, the way water resources are used or affected in the conflicts will attract attention, especially in the Russia-Ukraine war," the expert said, reminding that the use of water resources as a weapon or target in conflicts has been on the agenda in recent years.

Subjects such as the treatment and reuse of wastewater and water used in agriculture, cloud seeding, the treatment of seawater and brackish water, the use of alternative water resources such as rain harvesting and the development of technology will be on the agenda, according to Maden.

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