Urban Drought pp 347-361 | Cite as

Water Challenges in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia

  • Serjmyadag DalaiEmail author
  • Oyunbaatar Dambaravjaa
  • Gomboluudev Purevjav
Part of the Disaster Risk Reduction book series (DRR)


Ulaanbaatar, the capital city of Mongolia, faces an increasing urban population, a growing industrial sector that lacks effective regulation, and a related increase in the demand for residential and commercial water. Exacerbating these challenges is a combination of low precipitation, high evaporation rates and decreasing groundwater supplies, and as a result, the city has predicted water shortage issues in the near future. In recent years, the number of persons living in Ulaanbaatar has been increasing rapidly and 45% of Mongolia’s total population has been living in that city. Ulaanbaatar is located in a valley along the Tuul River, and the current and future water supply of the city is heavily dependent on the water resources of Tuul River, namely groundwater resources in the alluvial deposition of the river. Groundwater resources in Ulaanbaatar have been decreasing for last 50 years due to environmental degradation in Tuul River basin, and its usage has been increasing rapidly comparatively with replenishment of water resources. Government research has shown that daily water consumption is 212 m3 and this volume shall reach 438 m3 in 2020 and 708 m3 in 2050. Therefore, Ulaanbaatar is encountering water scarcity caused by rapidly increasing water consumption. For the people who are living in Ulaanbaatar, the most problematic issues will be the water scarcity which is caused by climate change, environmental degradation, and rapid urbanization. This study pointed out the fact of water-related challenges, particularly water scarcity caused by climate changes, urbanization, and water consumption increase in Ulaanbaatar.


Water scarcity Water supply Water demand 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Serjmyadag Dalai
    • 1
    Email author
  • Oyunbaatar Dambaravjaa
    • 2
  • Gomboluudev Purevjav
    • 2
  1. 1.Institute of Disaster Research, National Emergency Management AgencyUlaanbaatarMongolia
  2. 2.Information and Research Institute of Meteorology, Hydrology and EnvironmentUlaanbaatarMongolia

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