Water Conservation in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for Better Environment: Implications for Extension and Education

King Saud University, Department of Agricultural Extension and Rural Society, College of Food and Agricultural Sciences, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia


ZAHRANI, K. H., M. SHAYAA AL-SHAYAA and M. B. BAIG, 2011. Water conservation in the kingdom of Saudi Arabia for better environment: implications for extension and education. Bulg. J. Agric. Sci., 17: 389-395

The kingdom of Saudi Arabia faces an acute water shortage due to arid climate and absence of permanent lakesand rivers. The demand for water is growing substantially and that is being met through the available scarce and dwindling water resources. Ever-increasing imbalances are usually met by increasing water supplies, whereas the concepts of water-demand management have not been given due importance and weightage. Meeting the rapidly rising demand with scarce and depleting resources remains the critical issue. This paper places emphasizes on the urgency of adopting conservation and water-demand management initiatives to maintain demand supply relationship and achieve an acceptable balance between water needs and availability.
The kingdom places emphasis on the shift from supply development to demand management to use of critical and non-renewable water resources efficiently. The article suggests that the water-use-efficiency (WUE) in various sectors can be enhanced and improved in the kingdom. The paper presents an overview of the country’s water resources and issues related to water. Some possible conservation and remedial measures particularly in the agricultural sector - the largest and most inefficient user of water have been suggested. The objective of this article is to safeguard and conserve this precious natural resource through environmental friendly technologies for the future generations to come. It is presumed that water resources can be managed on sustainable basis by devising and employing environmental friendly technologies including water conservation measures. The usefulness of these measures can be supplemented through the vibrant and viable extension and education initiatives and capacity building programs.

Key words: water sources, water demand management, environmental friendly technologies, conservation measures, irrigation, awareness creation

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