EXPERT GROUP MEETING ON UPDATING ASSESSMENT OF WATER RESOURCES

IN ESCWA MEMBER COUNTRIES OPENS IN BEIRUT

  BEIRUT, 20  April  (UN Information  Service)  —  Under the  patronage  of

Sleiman  Trabulsi,   Lebanese  Minister  of   Oil,  Water  and   Electricity

Resources, an  Expert Group  Meeting on  "Updating the  Assessment of  Water

Resources in  the ESCWA Member Countries"  initiated by  the Energy, Natural

Resources and  Environment  Division  of  the United  Nations  Economic  and

Social Commission for  Western Asia (ESCWA)  was opened today at  the United

Nations House in Beirut.

  The  objective of the meeting,  which was opened by  the Lebanese Minister

of  Oil, Water  Resources and  Electricity  and Hazem  El-Beblawi, Executive

Secretary of  ESCWA, is  to review  the progress  made at  the national  and

regional  levels in  improving  water-resource knowledge,  including  shared

sources, water availability, potential and demand, status of  implementation

of supply and demand  management measures, and institutional and legislative

evolution in the ESCWA region.

  The four-day  meeting provides  a forum  for the  exchange of  experiences

between    government-designated    water   professionals,    experts    and

participants. Topics to  be covered  include water  resource assessment  and

regional integrated  water management,  recent  advances in  water-resource-

assessment  techniques with  regard to  improvements in  the application  of

existing  or  newly developed  methodologies,  isotopes,  modelling, remote-

sensing techniques,  and  the  use  of the  Geographic  Information  System.

Legal,  economic,  social   and  administrative  frameworks  will  also   be

discussed.   The outcome  of the  meeting will  contribute towards  improved

assessment,  development,  utilization   and  management  of  scarce   water

resources in the ESCWA region.

  The  meeting was  attended  by  representatives  of  ESCWA  member  States

(Bahrain,  Egypt, Iraq,  Jordan, Kuwait,  Lebanon, Oman,  Palestine,  Qatar,

Saudi Arabia,  Syria, United Arab  Emirates and  Yemen).   Delegates of  the

United   Nations  Secretariat   bodies,   specialized  agencies   and  other

organizations including  the Food  and Agriculture  Organization (FAO),  the

United Nations Educational, Scientific  and Cultural Organization  (UNESCO),

the United  Nations Environment Programme  (UNEP), the World  Meteorological

Organization (WMO), the  World Health Organization (WHO), the  International

Atomic  Energy  Agency  (IAEA),  the  United  Nations  University,  the Gulf

Cooperation Council,  King Abdulaziz City  for Science  and Technology,  and

the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).   A number of universities,

research  centres  and  nongovernmental  organizations  representatives  and

resource persons were also present.

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Document symbol: REC/40
Document Type: Press Release
Document Sources: Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA), Trusteeship Council
Subject: Water
Publication Date: 22/04/1999