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Water Allocation for Nature and the ‘End of Conflict’ Era

  • Tamar Achiron-Frumkin
  • Ron Frumkin

Abstract

Human activities and development pressures increasingly threaten open spaces (or ‘the countryside’), natural ecosystems and other natural resources in Israel. Among them, water sources are continuously degrading. Water is mainly managed for human use, and consequently, the ability of natural ecosystems to maintain themselves and to provide humans with ecosystem services decreases.

Despite the present status of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, planners should address long-term water-related issues and consider the possible situation at the ‘end of conflict’ era. The authors examined aspects regarding water resources in the peace agreements, in proposed regional cooperation development projects, and as reflected by social and economic trends and scenarios. Their findings indicate that in peaceful times the pressures on the natural environment and water resources are likely to increase. Proposed development and improper management by all sides involved may lead to further degradation of water resources (particularly critical to the mountain aquifer), and to a situation of ‘prolonged thirst’ of terrestrial ecosystems. A first attempt to address nature’s right for water through legislation was recently made in Israel, along with discussions on desalination and on increased usage of treated effluents in agriculture. Nevertheless, these changes in water management may be inadequate to guarantee ecosystems with sufficient and sustainable water supply.

Keywords

biodiversity ecosystem services peace agreement regional cooperation development project water allocation for nature 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tamar Achiron-Frumkin
    • 1
  • Ron Frumkin
    • 1
  1. 1.Mevasseret ZionIsrael

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