Progress on water accounts in ESCWA countries

[Progress on water accounts in ESCWA countries]

The ESCWA region comprises 14 ESCWA members, namely: Bahrain, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the Sudan, the Syrian Arab Republic, the United Arab Emirates and Yemen. The region covers 7.3 million km2, which represents 5.5 per cent of the world total area. All ESCWA member countries have access to the sea, with the longest coastlines in Saudi Arabia and Egypt at 7,572 km and 5,898 km respectively and highest altitudes found in Yemen, Lebanon and the Sudan at 3,666 m, 3,090 m and 3,075 m respectively. The region is rich in oil and gas resources, representing in 2008 some 51 per cent of the world proven oil reserves and 27 per cent of the world proven natural gas resources. However, the region suffers from water scarcity and aridity. The inland water surface covers only 1.6 per cent of the total ESCWA surface area. The region contains merely 0.56 per cent of the global renewable water resources, while it accounts for 3.6 per cent of the world’s population. Mean yearly precipitation is less than 100 mm per year in six ESCWA member countries, and between 100 and 300 mm per year in four other countries. The water is unevenly distributed and shortages in water supplies in summer are also observed in most regions. Therefore, water accounts are of major importance for the ESCWA region and this was further supported by a recommendation from the ESCWA Statistical Committee. The System of Environmental-Economic Accounting for Water (SEEAW) is an elaboration of the SEEA- 2003 and both use the 1993 SNA as basic framework. The SEEAW provides a conceptual framework for organizing the hydrological and economic information in a coherent and consistent manner complemented with a set of standard tables focusing on the following hydrological and economic information: (a) Stocks and flows of water resources within the environment; (b) Pressures of the economy on the environment in terms of water abstraction and emissions added to wastewater and released to the environment or removed from wastewater; (c) The supply of water and the use of water as input in the production process and by households; (d) The reuse of water within the economy; (e) The costs of collection, purification, distribution and treatment of water, as well as the service charges paid by the users; (f) The financing of these costs; (g) The payments of permits for access to abstract water or to use it as sink for discharge of wastewater; (h) The hydraulic stock in place, as well as investments in hydraulic infrastructure during the accounting period. (i) Quality accounts, which describe water resources in terms of their quality

Department of Economic and Social Affairs Statitics Division, UNITED NATIONS

Language: Inglés

Format: PDF

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