With access to freshwater growing scarcer around the world due to climate change and mismanagement, reliance on groundwater sources is becoming more acute in many countries. In places where groundwater is heavily used, such as across much of the MENA region, available volumes are tapering off mainly due to years of over-extraction to meet ever-growing demand. The strain on water systems will peak by 2050 when the global population is expected to reach between 9.4 and 10.2 billion, a 22-34% increase. In North Africa’s arid and desert lands, groundwater is often the only or predominant source of freshwater available to meet the needs of a burgeoning population, thus putting increasing pressure on local aquifers. At the United Nations Climate Change Conference, COP27, taking place in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt this November, much of the focus will be on adaptation approaches, which include smarter water resource management for the two billion people who live with inadequate supplies or access to clean water.
Join us for this expert panel as the scholars outline possible policies and mechanisms for a more effective management of both renewable and non-renewable groundwater aquifers in areas of the world critically at risk for climate change-induced water shortages.
Regional Representative, Middle East and North Africa, International Water Management Institute (IWMI)
Project Coordinator, Friedrich-Naumann-Stiftung für die Freiheit
Executive Director of the Joint Authority for the Study and Development of the Nubian Sandstone Aquifer System
Malak Altaeb, moderator
Non-Resident Scholar, Middle East Institute
Detailed Speaker Biographies
Malak Altaeb is an analyst, independent writer, and researcher from Libya based in Paris, France. She holds a Master’s degree in Environmental Policy from Sciences Po University in Paris, with a Bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from Tripoli, Libya. She is the Blogger and manager of the Libyan Wanderer.
Dr. Youssef Brouziyne is the International Water Management Institute’s (IWMI) Country Representative for Egypt and Regional Representative for the Middle East and North Africa. He brings a diversified experience in sustainability stewardship and resilience building across the water and agricultural value chains in North Africa, West Africa and Southern Europe with multinational agribusiness corporations and an applied research university in Morocco. Currently, together with a highly skilled team in the MENA office and a diversified panel of partners, Dr. Youssef Brouziyne strives to help stakeholders in the region move towards growth and sustainable development through innovative science-based water solutions.
Hamdi Hached has worked on several projects about climate change with UNDP, GIZ, Ministry of the Environment and Local Affairs, Tunisia. He is an environmental expert with Friedrich Naumann Foundation, Tunisia and Libya offices. He has published a policy paper on natural disasters and climate change with the German Think Tank Centre of Applied Policies and produced two documentaries about natural disasters and wildfires under the same project. In 2009, Hamdi filed a patent in bioenergy at the international level. In 2012, he worked on developing bio-jet fuel for the aerospace industry with the Airbus group. At the end of 2014, he started working with a consulting firm specializing in green buildings in the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) countries. Hamdi began to offer training and awareness for dozens of environmental NGOs based in Tunisia, Algeria, Jordan, Egypt, and Qatar in 2015.
Abdalraheem Huwaysh is a hydrogeologist (groundwater modeller) from Libya and the Executive Director of the Joint Authority for the Study and Development of the Nubian Sandstone Aquifer System since 2018. He is also a staff member in the geology department, Faculty of Science, at Tripoli University and holds a Master’s degree in geology (specialized in hydrogeology). Huwaysh has published more than eight papers during the past five years and contributed – as a team member – to implementing many national and regional research projects. In addition to scientific research in hydrogeology and groundwater modelling, his interests extend to the field of environmental geology.
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