Show Less
Restricted access

Water and the Development of Africa

Past, Present, and Future

Kwadwo A. Sarfoh

This book examines Africa’s water resources from pre-historic times to the present, illustrating how Africans and their rulers formulated water management systems to support water-sector activities including irrigation, livestock raising, fishing, river transportation, industry, and the generation of hydropower so crucial to the continent’s socio-economic transformation of its communities.
The recent increasing demand for water by Africa’s growing population makes it clear that new water management strategies are necessary for the continent to benefit from sustained development. In the face of ongoing water shortages caused by reduced rainfall, frequent droughts, and global warming, new political and economic arrangements are essential to ensure cooperative use of available water resources. Kwadwo A. Sarfoh argues that such arrangements will inevitably bring peace to countries that share river basins.
Show Summary Details
Restricted access

Chapter VIII Water and Development in Africa in the 21st Century


| 131 →

Chapter VIII

Water and Development in Africa in the 21ST Century

The configuration of Africa’s socioeconomic development was tied to availability of water at the time of the New Millennium more than at any other time in modern African history. This is not surprising in light of the fact that water, a natural resource, is intrinsically woven into water-sector activities critical to the continent’s quest for prosperity. Availability of water, however, is problematic since more than two-thirds of Africa’s land surface is covered by dry lands lacking adequate water supplies for development.

This lack is now compounded by a projected increase in demand for water among a growing population, as well as by erratic climate change. These two factors impact such natural variables as vegetation and water retention, and ultimately impede water-sector activities which are crucial for sustainable development.

This chapter explores the demand for water needed for future development. It identifies population growth and climate change as two areas requiring strong control and management. It also recommends ← 131 | 132 → strategies and policies directed at ensuring availability of water for development. Finally, the chapter puts forth institution building as a vehicle to address issues of water rights and access. The chapter begins by examining the twin challenges of population growth and climate change.

Population Growth

It is common knowledge that Africa is in the midst of great demographic changes. This can be readily...

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

This site requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals.

Do you have any questions? Contact us.

Or login to access all content.