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Impact of Water Reallocation on the Economy in the Fertile Crescent


  • Tala Qtaishat



Water scarcity is a societal problem in arid and semi-arid regions in the Fertile Crescent (FC). In FC countries, water shortages threaten economic growth, social cohesion, environmental sustainability and political stability. Under drought conditions, water shortages can be mitigated by using water more efficiently and by appropriate allocation of scarce water resources. In this paper water reallocation is addressed by reallocating some agricultural water use for other higher-value uses such as municipal and industrial sectors. Reallocating water from irrigation to other uses can provide sufficient and sustainable water supplies to meet the growing domestic and industrial demands for the next two decades. Most of the literature on water reallocation suggests that shifting water use from agriculture to other sectors would be feasible, but few studies address how much water should be reallocated.. The conceptual model will suppose that there are two users (A and B) and that their economic efficiency can be achieved when MB A = MB B, ceteris paribus . A reallocation of water away from agriculture at 1 % of average total water use per year for the next 20 years for a total reallocation of 20 % by year 20. would increase GDP, could help alleviate the water-scarcity problem in the FC and lead to more efficient use of water. Further work or modeling is less important than is action based on available analyses. All evidence suggests decision-makers would be on solid ground to began re-allocating water in the FC now. Copyright The Author(s) 2013

Suggested Citation

  • Tala Qtaishat, 2013. "Impact of Water Reallocation on the Economy in the Fertile Crescent," Water Resources Management: An International Journal, Published for the European Water Resources Association (EWRA), Springer;European Water Resources Association (EWRA), vol. 27(10), pages 3765-3774, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:waterr:v:27:y:2013:i:10:p:3765-3774
    DOI: 10.1007/s11269-013-0379-z

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. North, Douglass C, 1994. "Economic Performance through Time," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(3), pages 359-368, June.
    2. Mahan, Robert C. & Horbulyk, Theodore M. & Rowse, John G., 2002. "Market mechanisms and the efficient allocation of surface water resources in southern Alberta," Socio-Economic Planning Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 25-49, March.
    3. Bontemps, Christophe & Couture, Stéphane, 2002. "Irrigation water demand for the decision maker," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 7(4), pages 643-657, October.
    4. David Zilberman, 1997. "Allocation and Pricing at the Water District Level," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 79(3), pages 952-963.
    5. Dudu, Hasan & Chumi, Sinqobile, 2008. "Economics of irrigation water management : a literature survey with focus on partial and general equilibrium models," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4556, The World Bank.
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    Cited by:

    1. Shumin Han & Qiuli Hu & Yonghui Yang & Jiusheng Wang & Ping Wang & Quan Wang, 2015. "Characteristics and Driving Factors of Drainage Water in Irrigation Districts in Arid Areas," Water Resources Management: An International Journal, Published for the European Water Resources Association (EWRA), Springer;European Water Resources Association (EWRA), vol. 29(14), pages 5323-5337, November.
    2. Zhang, Dongmei & Guo, Ping, 2016. "Integrated agriculture water management optimization model for water saving potential analysis," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 170(C), pages 5-19.


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