Water Papers

183 items available

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Water Papers are produced by the Water Global Practice, taking up the work of the predecessor Water Unit, Transport, Water and ICT Department, Sustainable Development Vice Presidency.

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The Nitrogen Legacy: The Long-Term Effects of Water Pollution on Human Capital

2019-12-10, Zaveri, Esha, Russ, Jason, Damania, Richard, Rodella, Aude-Sophie

The fallout of nitrogen pollution is considered one of the largest global externalities facing the world, impacting air, water soil and human health. This paper presents new evidence that nitrogen pollution in water is an important determinant of variations in human capital. Data from the Demographic and Health Survey dataset across India, Vietnam, and 33 African countries are combined to analyze the causal links between pollution exposure experienced during the very earliest stages of life and later-life health. Results show that pollution exposure experienced in the critical years of development from the period of birth up until year three – is associated with decreased height as an adult, a well-known indicator of overall health and productivity, and is robust to several statistical checks. Because adult height is related to education, labor productivity, and income, this also implies a loss of earning potential. Results are consistent and show that early-life exposure to nitrogen pollution in water can lower height-for-age scores during childhood in Vietnam and during infancy in Africa. These findings add to the evidence on the enduring consequences of water pollution and identify a critical area for policy intervention.

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Economic Rationale for Cooperation on International Waters in Africa: A Review

2017-02-15, Namara, Regassa Ensermu, Giordano, Mark

Transboundary river basins cover 62 percent of Africa's total area and, with the exception of island states, every African country has at least one international river in its territory. Thus, transboundary water governance in Africa is central to any national or regional water strategy and any economic, poverty reduction, and environmental strategy. Despite the potential payoff from water cooperation, forging meaningful agreements for shared water management faces numerous challenges. Impediments to negotiated cooperation include differences in up- and downstream views on water rights and histories of water use; negotiating philosophies focused on the belief that water is a zero-sum game; geographic and political power differentials that conflict with basin-wide solutions; and uncertainty over basic water resources data that increase the perceived risks of cooperation. For cooperation to occur, riparian states, other stakeholders, and the facilitators of negotiation must be aware of the possible benefits of cooperation, whether benefit distribution will be shared, and what pathways are most likely to overcome potential barriers to negotiation. Economic theory and empirical analysis can play a productive role in providing the necessary information. This paper provides a review of the challenges to transboundary water cooperation, pathways for overcoming those challenges, and the role of economics in facilitating the discovery of those pathways. While it is written to focus on African transboundary waters, the report draws from broader transboundary water literature. Appendices include case studies on both game theory and hydro-economic analysis in transboundary cooperation for several river basins, including some from Africa. The limited studies that have quantified the gains from cooperation or costs of noncooperation show that the potential benefits are substantial. Recognizing the potential gains and costs for all parties provides a motivation for cooperation. The likelihood of cooperation around river basins is minimal if cooperation does not benefit the respective actors involved. In the final analysis, cooperation should be voluntary based on the self-interest of riparian states.

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Toward Efficient and Sustainable River Basin Operational Services in Indonesia

2015-08, World Bank Group

Since the introduction of the Water Law in 2004, national river basin management in Indonesia has been carried out by 30 public river basin management organizations (RBOs), called either Balai Besar Wilayah Sungai(s) (BBWSs) or Balai Wilayah Sungai(s) (BWSs); the two are referenced together here as B(B)WSs. These national government agencies fill both regulatory and management functions, as well as undertaking construction, operation, and maintenance of river infrastructure and irrigation systems larger than 3,000 hectares. Provincial water agencies also provide water resource and river basin management in provincial basins and basins of national river territories, in coordination with the national river basin agencies.

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Evaluating the Potential of Container-Based Sanitation: Sanergy in Nairobi, Kenya

2019-02-14, World Bank

This case study examines the container-based sanitation (CBS) service provided by Sanergy and how its business model fits overall in Nairobi as well as specifically in informal settlements there. Sanergy’s basic business concept is to provide safe sanitation to low-income residents of informal settlements in Nairobi and to create a sustainable value chain that converts feces into premium reuse products for agriculture. Sanergy provides single-cubicle, branded Fresh Life Toilets (FLTs) to franchisees for a fee and collects the excreta from the toilets on a frequent basis (daily or every two or three days). Satisfaction expressed by customers with Sanergy’s toilets was high and users of Sanergy’s toilets are paying much the same rates as they would for other toilet options. Overall, the FLT operation shows promise to provide a highly cost-effective sanitation solution at scale and the evolving policy landscape and significant investment by Sanergy and others has radically changed the status of CBS in a short time. Sanergy plans to scale significantly to serve as many as 500,000 people in its existing areas of operation, an ambitious expansion plan that will warrant further study and monitoring.

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Lesotho WEAP Manual

2017-02-08, World Bank

This analysis looks specifically at the need to ensure continued development of water resources within Lesotho and aims to empower stakeholders to act with more confidence by demonstrating that the implementation strategies can provide benefits to water resources management over a broad range of possible future scenarios. The analysis quantifies a range of possible future conditions to demonstrate the benefits that can be realized over a broad range of possible future outcomes. This quantification is based on a water resource decision support model developed specifically for Lesotho, using the Water Evaluation and Planning (WEAP) model which couples climate, hydrologic, and water management systems to facilitate an evaluation of the uncertainties and strategies of impacts on specified management metrics. The WEAP model was used to simulate the historic climate based on data from the national government archives and global datasets available in the public domain. These included 121 downscaled Global Climate Model (GCM) projections of future climate over two possible water demand future scenarios, for a total of 244 scenarios up to the year 2050. The analysis concludes the following: (a)Climate change has important determinants for the future, long-term sustainable macroeconomic development of Lesotho: (b)Domestic and industrial water security is highly vulnerable under historical and current climate conditions, as well as under the full range of climate future scenarios; (c) Agriculture production will remain vulnerable to inter-annual variability over the coming decades, particularly with continued reliance on rain fed agriculture; and (d) The Lesotho Highlands Water Project (LHWP) will continue to reliably meet transfers to South Africa over the coming decades unless climate conditions are about 5 percent drier or more than the historical record.

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Sierra Leone : Public Expenditure Review for Water and Sanitation 2002 to 2009

2011-07, Bennett, Anthony, Thompson, Darrell, van Ginneken, Meike

This review focuses on how public expenditure translates into the delivery of water supply and sanitation services in rural and urban areas in Sierra Leone. It describes the legal and institutional framework for the allocation of resources assesses access to Water Supply and Sanitation (WSS) services and past sector performance, and analyzes public expenditure in the sector, including the factors affecting the efficiency of use of resources, and makes recommendations. Water supply includes the supply, distribution, and usage of water for drinking, food preparation, and hygiene. Sanitation is defined as the sanitary disposal of liquid waste and the promotion of hygienic practices. The review covers the period from 2002 to 2009, a period of reconstructing after a decade of upheavals. Since 2002, democracy and a stable environment for development have been re-established in the country, especially since the 2007 presidential elections. Sierra Leone remains one of the poorest countries in the world.

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Economywide and Distributional Impacts of Water Resources Development in the Coast Region of Kenya: Implications for Water Policy and Operations

2018-05, Beyene, Lulit, Namara, Regassa, Sahoo, Amar, Shiferaw, Bekele, Maisonnave, Helene, Saltiel, Gustavo

A water-focused computable general equilibrium and microsimulation models were applied to analyze the economywide and distributional impacts of the multipurpose Mwache dam investment in the coast region of Kenya. The results show that the dam is likely to contribute to the regional economic growth with highest results under the combined allocation scenario of 80 percent for domestic users and nonagricultural economic sectors and 20 percent for irrigation purposes. In the coast region, water allocation to agriculture is key for inclusive growth and poverty reduction. With irrigation water, increased production of maize, pulses, oil crops, fruits, and vegetables in the hitherto drought-prone region fuels agricultural productivity growth that benefits the regional and national economies. Thus, allocation of water to irrigation can have considerable effects on food availability and food and nutritional security in the region, which suffers from persistent food deficits. Provision of domestic water supply is necessary but not sufficient for overcoming extreme poverty. Increased water availability benefits all industries operating in the coast region, in particular, those relatively more intensive in water.

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Lesotho Water Security and Climate Change Assessment

2016-08-18, World Bank Group

The analysis looks specifically at the need to ensure continued development of water resources within Lesotho and aims to empower stakeholders to act with more confidence by demonstrating that the implementation strategies can provide benefits to water resources management over a broad range of possible future scenarios. The analysis quantifies a range of possible future conditions to demonstrate the benefits that can be realized over a broad range of possible future outcomes. This quantification is based on a water resource decision support model developed specifically for Lesotho, using the Water Evaluation and Planning (WEAP) model which couples climate, hydrologic, and water management systems to facilitate an evaluation of the uncertainties and strategies of impacts on specified management metrics. The WEAP model was used to simulate the historic climate based on data from the national government archives and global datasets available in the public domain. These included 121 downscaled Global Climate Model (GCM) projections of future climate over two possible water demand future scenarios, for a total of 244 scenarios up to the year 2050.

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Appropriate Groundwater Management Policy for Sub-Saharan Africa: In Face of Demographic Pressure and Climatic Variability

2011, Tuinhof, Albert, Foster, Stephen, van Steenbergen, Frank, Talbi, Amal, Wishart, Marcus

This paper provides an overview of major groundwater issues for Sub-Saharan Africa, with an assessment of their policy implications in terms of potential development and appropriate management. In terms of construction time, capital outlay and drought resilience, groundwater is the preferred source to meet most water-supply demands, despite hydro geological complexity, natural constraints on water well yields and quality, and institutional weaknesses. The 'new developmental agenda' relates to improving urban water-supply security and expanding irrigated agriculture to meet these challenges many countries need to undertake strategic assessment of their groundwater and prioritize investment on institutional strengthening so as to facilitate appropriately-managed groundwater development. Without effective use of available groundwater resources, improved livelihoods and climate-change adaptation will prove much more difficult to achieve.