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Monday, June 27, 2022

UN Voices Alarm as Water Security in Libya is Threatened

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On Thursday, the United Nation’s Humanitarian Office in Libya (UNOCHA) said that the recent heat waves across Libya, acute power cuts, the rapid spread of COVID-19, continuous damage to the water system, pose acute threats to people’s lives, and time is running out to act.

In a statement, Justin Brady, UNOCHA Head of Office for Libya, voiced his deep concern over the extreme weather and climate change in Libya. He claimed this was at a scale that people and the humanitarian and development communities cannot help manage.

Brady added that the repeated attacks on the Great Man-Made River, which provides 60% of all freshwater used in Libya, threatens the water security of the entire country. Moreover, the Wadi Kaam Dam, once holding about 33 million cubic meters of water, has entirely dried up due to an ever-warming climate, affecting farms and projects directly dependent on it for irrigation.

“Conflict and the current health situation have overshadowed the climate impacts to which Libya is very vulnerable. Disrupted water supplies and drying reservoirs are just a few visible depictions of that. If we do not take action now, we are putting millions of lives at immediate risk of losing access to safe water,” he noted.

This can have a catastrophic effect on people’s health, livelihoods, agriculture, hygiene, and the spread of communicable diseases,” Brady stressed.

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