Kurdistan lost 64m of underground water in three years
ERBIL, May 27 (AKnews)- Kurdistan is losing its underground water resources in an increasingly high speed, warned an official.Due to draughts, digging illegal and legal wells and consuming underground water for drinking and irrigation, Kurdistan is losing its underground water wealth very quickly, said Mohammed-Amin Fars Pendroyi, general director of water resources in Kurdistan Ministry of Agriculture. He said in the past 11 years the level of the underground water in some areas has reduced 100 meters. For reaching underground water one has to dig 350m in Erbil, 250m in Suli, and again 250m in Duhok. While 11 years ago one could reach underground water at only 180m to 220m depth in Erbil, 90 to 150m in Suli and 150m in Duhok. The level is receding very fast which is very "dangerous", Pendroyi said. 2000 through 2008 in Erbil's Mala Omar neighborhood for instance the level decreased 18m but in the same area three years later the level lowered 45m more. In the past three years in Duhok's Akre city the level lowered 12 meters and in Suli's Halabja seven meters. Pendroyi said that now more water is consumed comparing to past while the snowing and raining rates are decreasing annually. He was especially concerned about digging wells, especially the illegal ones. He said there are 4,800, 7,828, and 2,034 legal wells in Erbil, Suli and Duhok, respectively, and 2,000, 17,000 and 40 illegal onces in the three provinces successively. Most of the wells are dug with Syrian-made equipments which Syria has itself banned in the country in order to preserve its underground water, according to Pendroyi. He advised the government to provide for drinking and irrigation water from the rivers "or one day the underground water will mix with other components and it cannot be used… the wells will also get dry … then a disaster will happen."
By Sarbaz Saleh