Pradigm shift to Regional Cooperation on water and food security in the Middle East is urgent and vital
Head of International Affairs Center
Emerging threats force enhancing regional cooperation in the MENA through regional projects will be developed based on muttually beneficial approach The Middle East region has many contradictions and extremes in terms of using of natural resources, sharp sociological realm fragile level of development and inconceivable per capita income.
The region, which is mostly rich in conventional energy resources such as oil and gas, is one of the most water scarce and food import dependent regions in the world.
Existing insecurities in water and food in the region have been linked to some of the conflicts in the region motions acting as a threat multiplier as well as pressure points.
As it is well known anymore ongoing war in Syria started as the result of complex interrelated socio- political and economic factors and challenges associated with climate variability induced subsequent drought periods.These insecurities are expected to be further intensified with the projected impacts of climate change, increase in population growth, economic growth, increase in urbanization rate and the ongoing security conflicts in the region.
It is obvious that many countries in the region could benefit from enhanced cooperation to deal with challenges in the water and food security that will shape of the future of the region.
The projected climate change will not only impact water availability, agricultural productivity. It will also lead to an increased risk of natural disasters and higher rates of internal and regional displacement. According to one of the projections, the impacts of climate change will decrease agricultural productivity in Lebanon and result in an increase in national net migration of 3.19% between 2010 and 2030.
In sum, new initiatives with a paradigm shift are needed to drive this process. We firstly need to create a shared goal ,shared vision and unity of effort base.In the region afterwards we need to try confidence building measures, working towards a shared and improved knowledge base, technology transfer and innovation, information sharing, capacity and institutional building, encouraging private sector participation in process.
We need to change old paradigm before water management crises.