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Moving on Water Crisis, Yemen Ban on Import of Water Well Drillers

Yemen is taking tough measures to secure new water resources and restrict an increase in the consumption of groundwater including banning the import of well drillers.

The move comes within the ninth priority on the list of the government's top ten priorities for the next two years.

The measures also include control of the import of spare parts of water well drillers and the Ministry of Interior and the Water Resources Authority must coordinate to number drillers and seize violators moving among the cities without authorized licenses.

The Ministry of Local Administration will identify the locations of drillers in coordination with the authority coinciding with accelerating judicial procedures over violations.

While the Ministry of Finance must provide necessary funds for the implementation of water strategies, current and future water grids operation and the national program for raising awareness about water consumption.

The ministry should also work on conducting the preliminary study on Al-Sabatain area that will feed the capital with drinking water, search for funds for the study, approve the national policy methods for waterfalls while implementing water harvesting projects and approve necessary incentives for traditional water harvesting knowledge.

The measures come amid a sharp decline in water in the country, with some reports suggesting Sana'a, the capital, would be the first Arab city to plunge into thirsty.

In recent years, Yemen has suffered major water problems, first and foremost, the sharp decline in groundwater caused by random well drilling and consuming much water for Qat trees.

While the future plans focus on exerting major efforts to raise the public awareness about benefiting from rainwater through water harvesting and installing related systems within granting building licenses; allocating funds for expanding water harvesting systems; and rehabilitating terraces and valley banks.

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