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Gini coefficient to assess equity in domestic water supply in the Yellow River

  • Xiao-jun WangEmail author
  • Jian-yun Zhang
  • Shamsuddin Shahid
  • Amgad ElMahdi
  • Rui-min He
  • Xin-gong Wang
  • Mahtab Ali
Original Article

Abstract

Yellow River, is designated as “the cradle of Chinese civilization” and played a key role not only in the country’s economic development but also in the historic and cultural identity of the Chinese people. With the rapid economic development and population growth, water demand for industry and households has increased significantly in the Yellow River basin; this has caused an increasing gap between water supply and demand. Competing water demands triggered conflicts between disparate water users on different scales such as the rich and the poor, or between different sectors and regions, such as domestic and agriculture, agriculture and industry, upstream and downstream, rural and urban areas, etc. Ensuring equity in water supply for conflicting water users is one of the major challenges that facing water managers and in particular water management in the Yellow River basin. In this paper, a method has been developed to calculate the Gini coefficient of water use as an indicator to measure the equality in domestic water supply. A dual domestic water use structure model is employed for this purpose. The developed method is subsequently applied to assess the equality in domestic water supply in the Yellow River. Data of population growth, domestic water use and economic development over the time period 1999-2006 are used to calculate the Gini coefficient of water use over the same length of period. The result shows a decreasing trend in Gini coefficient of domestic water use in the Yellow River basin after 2001 which means domestic water use is becoming more and more equitable in the basin. The study justifies that the Gini coefficient of water use can be used and recommended as a useful tool for the water management especially in the context of global change.

Keywords

Water demand management Domestic water use Gini coefficient Equity Yellow River 

Notes

Acknowledgements

We are grateful to the National Basic Research Program of China (No. 2010CB951104) and International Science & Technology Cooperation Program of China (No. 2010DFA24330) for financial support of this research. Thanks also to the helpful comments received from the anonymous reviewers and the editors.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Xiao-jun Wang
    • 1
    • 2
    • 7
    Email author
  • Jian-yun Zhang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Shamsuddin Shahid
    • 3
  • Amgad ElMahdi
    • 4
  • Rui-min He
    • 1
    • 2
  • Xin-gong Wang
    • 5
  • Mahtab Ali
    • 6
  1. 1.State Key Laboratory of Hydrology-Water Resources and Hydraulic EngineeringNanjing Hydraulic Research InstituteNanjingChina
  2. 2.Research Center for Climate ChangeMinistry of Water ResourcesNanjingChina
  3. 3.Department of GeologyUniversity of MalayaKuala LumpurMalaysia
  4. 4.Urban Water Unit Head, Climate and Water DivisionBureau of Meteorology (BOM)MelbourneAustralia
  5. 5.Yellow River Basin Water Resources Protection BureauZhengzhouChina
  6. 6.Water DivisionBureau of Meteorology (BOM)PerthAustralia
  7. 7.Research Centre for Climate Change, Ministry of Water ResourcesNanjing Hydraulic Research InstituteNanjingPeople’s Republic of China

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