Inventory of Shared Water Resources in Western Asia

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This publication is the first UN-led effort to make a comprehensive assessment of the state of transboundary surface and groundwater resources in the Middle East. It follows a standardized structure, with eight surface water chapters and 19 groundwater chapters that systematically address hydrology, hydrogeology, water resources development and use, international water agreements and transboundary water management efforts. The chapters cover all rivers and groundwater resources shared between Arab countries in the Middle East and include data on water resources that are shared with Iran, Israel and Turkey. Boasting over 50 new maps and 200 figures, tables and boxes with recent, comprehensive data series, the Inventory provides an up-to-date view of the state and evolution of shared water resources in the region.




The Taurus-Zagros Mountain range extends across Iran, northern Iraq and Turkey. Geological formations within this range constitute shared aquifer systems in some areas along the boundaries of these countries. Three such areas are identified and described in this chapter: the Halabja-Khurmal and the Central Diyala Basins between Iran and Iraq, and the Zakho Basin between Iraq and Turkey. Other shared basins may possibly exist but remain unknown because of the complexity of the tectonics in the area.


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