TU Darmstadt / ULB / TUbiblio

Urbanization effects on local water resources - balancing increasing demands and sustainable provision

Hack, Jochen (2010):
Urbanization effects on local water resources - balancing increasing demands and sustainable provision.
In: International Boserup conference “Long-term trajectories in population, gender relations, land use, and the environment”, Wien, Österreich, 16.11. - 27.11.2010, [Conference or Workshop Item]

Abstract

Since the first permanent settlements in the Fertile Crescent (Mesopotamia and the Levant) more than 10.000 years ago, urban agglomerations and their development are intensively connected to available (fresh-)water resources in their surroundings. Soon revealed that with increasing population density water had to be conducted from ever remoter regions, already in the roman empire this lead to the development of large infrastructure, e.g. aqueducts of several hundred kilometers of length. Thus the impact of cities on water resources can be observed on the one hand due to significant regional water imports, but on the other hand also in qualitative terms from contamination as result of city development and rapid economic growth. Since 2008 the majority of the world population lives now in cities and the process of urbanization is still expected to continue for several decades, especially in Sub-Sahara-Africa and Southeast-Asia. Population growth is highest in the cities of developing countries, where most of this growth takes place in informal settlements. Water resources in this context are increasingly stressed as an irreplaceable resource as well as a sink for urban pollution and waste. The main driving force along with population growth is economic development resulting in increased consumption. In urban areas both processes are spatially concentrated causing large urban water footprints. Although smaller in total volume, urban water consumption is already increasing faster than agricultural water consumption. Due to this spatial concentration water extraction and contamination are rising locally, causing more competition of finite water resources between different users. This contribution focuses on an assessment of urbanization effects on water resources, concluding with an outlook on future challenges of sustainable water management in rapidly urbanizing regions. The inter-connectivity of population growth, economic development and water demand is highlighted. While the availability of water is a prerequisite for economic development, it puts this scarce resource at the same time at risk. A balanced shift from poorly developed cities with low individual consumption and high pollution to more developed cities with higher consumption and lower pollution is expected. How this will be done is questioned and subject of this contribution.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item
Erschienen: 2010
Creators: Hack, Jochen
Title: Urbanization effects on local water resources - balancing increasing demands and sustainable provision
Language: English
Abstract:

Since the first permanent settlements in the Fertile Crescent (Mesopotamia and the Levant) more than 10.000 years ago, urban agglomerations and their development are intensively connected to available (fresh-)water resources in their surroundings. Soon revealed that with increasing population density water had to be conducted from ever remoter regions, already in the roman empire this lead to the development of large infrastructure, e.g. aqueducts of several hundred kilometers of length. Thus the impact of cities on water resources can be observed on the one hand due to significant regional water imports, but on the other hand also in qualitative terms from contamination as result of city development and rapid economic growth. Since 2008 the majority of the world population lives now in cities and the process of urbanization is still expected to continue for several decades, especially in Sub-Sahara-Africa and Southeast-Asia. Population growth is highest in the cities of developing countries, where most of this growth takes place in informal settlements. Water resources in this context are increasingly stressed as an irreplaceable resource as well as a sink for urban pollution and waste. The main driving force along with population growth is economic development resulting in increased consumption. In urban areas both processes are spatially concentrated causing large urban water footprints. Although smaller in total volume, urban water consumption is already increasing faster than agricultural water consumption. Due to this spatial concentration water extraction and contamination are rising locally, causing more competition of finite water resources between different users. This contribution focuses on an assessment of urbanization effects on water resources, concluding with an outlook on future challenges of sustainable water management in rapidly urbanizing regions. The inter-connectivity of population growth, economic development and water demand is highlighted. While the availability of water is a prerequisite for economic development, it puts this scarce resource at the same time at risk. A balanced shift from poorly developed cities with low individual consumption and high pollution to more developed cities with higher consumption and lower pollution is expected. How this will be done is questioned and subject of this contribution.

Uncontrolled Keywords: Urbanization, land use change, water supply, water resources, sustainability
Divisions: 11 Department of Materials and Earth Sciences > Earth Science
11 Department of Materials and Earth Sciences > Earth Science > Ecological Engineering
13 Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering Sciences
13 Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering Sciences > Institute of Hydraulic and Water Resources Engineering
13 Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering Sciences > Institute of Hydraulic and Water Resources Engineering > Engineering Hydrology and Water Management
11 Department of Materials and Earth Sciences
Event Title: International Boserup conference “Long-term trajectories in population, gender relations, land use, and the environment”
Event Location: Wien, Österreich
Event Dates: 16.11. - 27.11.2010
Date Deposited: 17 Nov 2010 13:43
Alternative keywords:
Alternative keywordsLanguage
Urbanization, land use change, water supply, water resources, sustainabilityEnglish
Export:
Suche nach Titel in: TUfind oder in Google

Optionen (nur für Redakteure)

View Item View Item