As part of the preliminary workshops for the fourth edition of the World Youth Forum, “Towards Rational Water Policies for Humanity” workshop was held in Aswan Hall to discuss the global issue of water scarcity. After a rich discussion, a number of ideas and proposals were presented by the youth to overcome this global challenge.
Irene Eastmalk, Consultant of Environmental Engineering and Vice-President of the Board of the German International Cooperation Agency (GICeVK), led the workshop. She emphasized the criticality of the water scarcity issue and introduced the attendees to the term “virtual water.” She also presented a number of water-related problems around the world as well as some unconventional solutions to them. Moreover, she praised the Egyptian experience in resolving the water crisis, through multiple efforts which included the lining of canals project, the use of modern irrigation methods, the expansion of rainwater reservoirs, and the use of the triple treatment at the “Bahr al-Baqar” station, the largest of its kind in the world.
Dina Hisham Al-Mokadam, the spokeswoman for the Coordination of Youth Parties and Politicians, discussed the legal dimension in relation to water crises between countries. She also pointed out the aggression of some countries towards others through building dams without a binding agreement, and that the United Nations should take legal action towards these aggressors.
Carolina Tornesi, President of the World Youth Water Parliament, gave credit to the World Youth Forum for its role in raising awareness of the water scarcity issue and suggesting ways to solve it through dedicating a workshop to the topic. She also stated that climate change and irrational consumption are the main reasons for this global issue, stressing the major role of youth in working towards solving it.
Adel Guama, Africa’s representative in the World Water Parliament for Youth, gave a detailed presentation focusing on water resource management and the role of the youth in water diplomacy.
Finally, a hypothetical scenario was developed for the workshop participants by dividing them into downstream countries, upstream countries, corridor countries, and international organizations, and the recommendations of each team were presented.