Critical Assessment of the Environmental Consequences of the Invasion of Kuwait, the Gulf War, and the Aftermath

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The invasion, occupation and liberation warfare severely impacted all aspects of desert environment, the soil, native vegetation and other natural resources of Kuwait. The State of Kuwait adopted immediate measures after liberation to restore the oil sector and clear the ammunition from the desert. Several studies were conducted by local and international organizations to understand the nature of the damage and quantify the extent of the damage to the environment and ecosystem. The results clearly indicate that these impacts still persist even after 18 years and in some cases, their hazard potential has increased. Research efforts were also made to evaluate various technologies to rehabilitate or restore degraded ecosystems and the environment. However, further research is needed to monitor long-term impacts of pollutants on the ecology and human health. The chapter discusses the findings of the investigations conducted on this subject and presents recommendations for large-scale rehabilitation of Kuwait's desert environment and ecosystem.