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Severe drinking water shortage affects all resident of the Kabul river basin. Two and a half decades of civil war in Afghanistan (it began in late 1978) have resulted in widespread environmental degradation and water resource development throughout the country. The war has already finished and, therefore, water resource management for supplying water is one of the most important tasks for Afghanistan’s government. The Kabul river basin which is the most populated area in the country is located in the eastern part of Afghanistan. This article deals with the water resource properties of the Kabul river basin and also water demand in the important cities of the basin, such as Kabul, the capital and the largest city in the country. Also a few suggestions for providing water for domestic and agriculture purposes in short term, medium time and long term have been discussed.
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... A recent study conducted by Mack (2018) shows that groundwater is the main source of domestic use in Kabul Province. Groundwater quantity and quality has become a major concern among the decision makers and researchers which brought them about to conduct comprehensive groundwater management-related studies in the last decade (Broshears 2005;Farahmand et al. 2021;Hussaini et al. 2022;Lashkaripour et al. 2008;Mack 2009;Saffi 2011;Saffi 2011;Zaryab et al. 2017;Akhtar et al. 2017;Mahaqi et al. 2018;Zahid et al. 2020;Mahaqi et al. 2020;Jawadi et al. 2020). ...
... The available data from 1957 to 2021 indicates considerable fluctuations in amount of precipitation and temperature. The average annual precipitation during 1957-1977 was recorded 330 mm, whereas the temperature during this period changed between 10°C and 13°C (Lashkaripour 2008). Data received form meteorological stations indicate that precipitation in 2006-2007 decreased considerably. ...
... The temperature, electrical conductivity (EC), total dissolved solids (TDS), Escherichia coli and nitrate in groundwater samples from central Kabul sub-basin were considerably higher than samples from other sub-basins (USGS 2013). Deep and shallow or the quaternary and Neogene aquifers are the two types of aquifers in Kabul Province (Lashkaripour et al. 2008). An aquiclud (bed rock), containing clay (mud stone) and bedded silts, sand and gravel, underlined the upper Tertiary (Neogene) aquifer-aquitard systems. ...
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Groundwater contamination has been on the rise in Afghanistan. It has become a major concern among the policy makers. This paper aims to propose practical options for the management of nitrate contamination in one of Afghanistan’s groundwater polluted provinces, Kabul. The management framework utilized Mann-Kendall and Sen Slope tests to detect nitrate trend and geostatistical analysis option in ArcGIS 10.5 to assess the nitrate change. To explore the impact of various management options, a number of legislative documents were reviewed. The results indicate a decline in the nitrate storage of Kabul aquifers from 108 mg/L in 2005 to 0.044 mg/L in 2010. Considering the whole period of the study, the results show that the nitrate volumes remain lower than the nitrate concentration range proposed by World Health Organization (50 mg/L). Groundwater dynamics in Kabul aquifers were influenced by nitrate derived from precipitation and nitrate input from root zones in agricultural areas. Finally, different management options for groundwater pollution from nitrate and corresponding authorities, incorporated urban, rural and agriculture, were proposed. It is expected that this study will help policy makers to better manage the nitrate storage of Kabul aquifers by implementing the proposed management options.
... Only 27% of the population has access to safe drinking water, despite the fact that 7.9 million hectares of farmland are used to provide it. As per Qureshi (2002) (Lashkaripour and Hussaini, 2008). ...
... In 2015, (MiCT) Hundreds of thousands of Afghans depend on it for their daily survival. The Kabul River and its tributaries are the only sources of water for the province of KP(Lashkaripour and Hussaini, 2008). ...
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Due to their food and electricity requirements, freshwater has become extremely important for the living conditions of nations and sub-nations alike. At the same time, changing climate is negatively affecting its requirement through heat waves, groundwater osmotic pressure and glacier melting. As a colonial identity and being outmoded, water resources between Pakistan and Afghanistan did lack lengthy-term sustainable development. It may not trigger blatant aggression, but it is vulnerable to conflicts between and within. This document examines the threats our western neighbour presented to our water sources and discusses the related institutional framework of their leadership. It examines appropriate ideas, laws, and norms to discover Afghanistan and Pakistan's current policy regime. Finally, the paper aims reinforcing hydro-diplomacy for a stable environment in the region.
... The climate of the area is influenced by the local steppe type with a semi-arid climate. It has a continental type of climate with cool in winter and hot in summer [41,42]. The Koppen climate classification is BSh. ...
... Thus, Salvador, London, Lagos, and Cape Town all are out of phase with ∼ −0.8 , but only the latter has high amplitudes and thus high inefficiency. High inefficiency corresponds to large deficits between supply and demand and is thus consistent with the observed greater vulnerability to water security in these regions (Lashkaripour & Hussaini, 2008;Maxmen, 2018). Elasticities of runoff to sine model amplitudes or phase difference that are greater in magnitude than 0.4 are inset in Figure 4 (all values for these cities are shown in Table S2 in Supporting Information S1), highlighting that elasticity to amplitude, timing, or both is important for each of these examples, consistent with the global observations. ...
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The mechanisms underlying observed global patterns of partitioning precipitation (P $P$) to evapotranspiration (E $E$) and runoff (Q $Q$) are controversially debated. We test the hypothesis that asynchrony between climatic water supply and demand is sufficient to explain spatio‐temporal variability of water availability. We developed a simple analytical model for Q $Q$ that is determined by four dimensionless characteristics of intra‐annual water supply and demand asynchrony. The analytical model, populated with gridded climate data, accurately predicted global runoff patterns within 2%–4% of independent estimates from global climate models, with spatial patterns closely correlated to observations (R2=0.93 ${R}^{2}=0.93$). The supply‐demand asynchrony hypothesis provides a physically based explanation for variability of water availability using easily measurable characteristics of climate. The model revealed widespread responsiveness of water budgets to changes in climate asynchrony in almost every global region. Furthermore, the analytical model using global averages independently reproduced the Budyko curve (R2=0.99 ${R}^{2}=0.99$) providing theoretical foundation for this widely used empirical relationship.
... The average annual temperature is about 13 °C and it varies remarkably across the entire basin. Similarly, the average annual precipitation also varies across the basin but most of the precipitation falls on the northern side of the basin, which is measured up to 1600 mm (Lashkaripour and Hussaini 2008). Mehmood et al. (2021) studied the long term changes in precipitation indices as well as temperature indices in the KRB. ...
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The hydrological extremes like floods and drought are increasing in recent decades all over the world but particularly in South Asia. Pakistan ranked 5th most vulnerable as per the climate risk index because it is susceptible to floods and droughts across various spaces and times. The recent evidence of climate change led us to study the floods for a high-altitude river basin, the Kabul River basin (KRB), Pakistan. The region is customarily influenced by flooding. Accordingly, the study was planned to examine the most likely impact of climate change on extreme floods under high-end warming scenario RCP 8.5. The multi-model ensemble from CMIP5 along with HEC-HMS was employed to quantify the impact of climate change on extreme floods. The main research results represented that the projected flood magnitude has been decreased in the future period (2016–2100) as compared to the historical period (1981–2015), for the Kabul River at Nowshera under RCP 8.5. The floods of 2, 5, 10, 25, 50, and 100 years are projected to be decreased by 2%, 24%, 23%, 16%, 11%, and 17% respectively. The magnitude of 3-day rainfall events of all durations is projected to decrease throughout the basin. Therefore, the corresponding magnitude of extreme flood events will also decrease in the KRB, Pakistan. However, the frequency of the 3-day rainfall events of 2, 5, and 10 years return period has been increased in the future period (2016–2100) as compared to the historical period (1981–2015). This frequent occurrence of extreme rainfall events can be challenging to mitigate the flood hazard. The findings of the study will be vital to improving flood management under changing climate in the region.
... Compounding the problems of water management and use is the general lack of information and data for planning, especially considering that an expansion of arid land-cover is expected in both regions of the Hindu Kush, leading to shifts in ecosystems [2], efficient institutions, organizational and individual capabilities, and effective rules and regulations. Although the Afghan government has prioritized the development of the water sector, the country needs adequate human capacity, an effective institutional setup, and managerial capacities to attain this objective [3]. ...
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Water governance is a sensitive and contentious issue that requires multi-stakeholder participation and judicious use of technology. The new water law in Afghanistan focuses on the participation of stakeholders in water management, equitable water allocation, task division, and decision-making at the sub-basin, basin, and national levels. This paper looks at a multi-stakeholder partnership approach aligned with technological solutions designed by ICIMOD to facilitate collaboration for the purpose of addressing the key challenges and exploring opportunities for river basin management in Afghanistan. ICIMOD helped to broker a context-specific partnering approach to strengthen collaboration for water resource management by embedding the principles and frameworks of collaborating in cooperation and strategic partnership with the Partnership Brokers Association, which entails a shift from commitments to engage with stakeholders to codesigning and implementing activities based on partnering principles to achieve the goal of water resource management in Afghanistan. The paper highlights and discusses the various cases of the project that offer reflections on the participatory approach adopted and the value addition that each partner, on the basis of their strengths, brings to the partnership. The paper highlights the positive impacts that multi-stakeholder partnerships can have on overcoming the complex challenges faced in strengthening water resource management in Afghanistan.
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Plain Language Summary The Kabul River is a transboundary river spanning eastern Afghanistan and northern Pakistan. It is an important tributary of the Indus, one of the world's largest rivers with intensive water withdrawals for human use. With climate change, the Kabul River is projected to have more frequent and larger floods, but the projections are very uncertain. To have a better understanding of these future projections, we need to look at how the region's climate has changed in the past. Tree rings are a valuable source of information to serve that need. Using old‐growth conifers from the Hindu Kush Mountains, western Himalaya, we reconstruct four centuries of precipitation (rainfall) history for the Kabul River Basin. From the reconstruction, we observe that dry years are getting drier. Thus, the risks of severe droughts are increasing. Prolonged droughts are being replaced by shorter but more frequent ones, and periods of sustained high precipitation are also becoming more frequent. When seen in combination with earlier reports, our results imply that the Kabul River Basin is facing both floods and drought risks, and these are significant threats to the water security of the basin.
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Full-text available
Due to their food and electricity requirements, freshwater has become extremely important for the living conditions of nations and sub-nations alike. At the same time, changing climate is negatively affecting its requirement through heat waves, groundwater osmotic pressure and glacier melting. As a colonial identity and being outmoded, water resources between Pakistan and Afghanistan did lack lengthy-term sustainable development. It may not trigger blatant aggression, but it is vulnerable to conflicts between and within. This document examines the threats our western neighbour presented to our water sources and discusses the related institutional framework of their leadership. It examines appropriate ideas, laws, and norms to discover Afghanistan and Pakistan's current policy regime. Finally, the paper aims reinforcing hydro-diplomacy for a stable environment in the region.
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Since 1960, South Asia has emerged as the largest user of groundwater in irrigation in the world. Yet, little is known about this burgeoning economy, now the mainstay of the region's agriculture, food security and livelihoods. Results from the first socio-economic survey of its kind, involving 2,629 well-owners from 278 villages from India, Pakistan, Nepal Terai and Bangladesh, show that groundwater is used in over 75% of the irrigated areas in the sample villages, far more than secondary estimates suggest. Thanks to the pervasive use of groundwater in irrigation, rain-fed farming regions are a rarity although rain-fed plots within villages abound. Groundwater irrigation is quintessentially supplemental and used mostly on water-economical inferior cereals and pulses, while a water-intensive wheat and rice system dominates canal areas. Subsidies on electricity and canal irrigation shape the sub-continental irrigation economy, but it is the diesel pump that drives it. Pervasive markets in tubewell irrigation services enhance irrigation access to the poor. Most farmers interviewed reported resource depletion and deterioration, but expressed more concern over the high cost and poor reliability of energy supply for groundwater irrigation, which has become the fulcrum of their survival strategy.
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The present and predicted increase in groundwater's share of human freshwater withdrawals, its unprecedented importance for human activities globally, and the emerging threats from escalated and unplanned use and degradation, especially in the developing countries, point to the need for intensified efforts to cope with the imbalances. Despite these facts, there is little intervention by governments in developing countries. Sufficient knowledge, awareness and understanding of the groundwater resources and their proper management are missing in these countries, as well as in the international community. Links and trends are described, which highlight problem areas, such as water contamination, urbanization, and socio-economic factors related to groundwater management practices. Globalization provides novel opportunities for facilitating the process of acquiring and applying the necessary knowledge and can, and should, be further explored and developed. The likely benefits of this are: increase in convergence of understanding and approaches; the sharing of knowledge; and potentially wide-reaching, lasting, and scale-crossing networks. The international development and research community is in a particularly fortunate position to promote and facilitate such a process, which should go hand in hand with well focused and coordinated "on the ground" tasks, such as local networking, field investigations, capacity building, and advocacy activities.
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In Afghanistan, after two decades of civil strife and successive droughts from 1998 to 2002, large inflows of food aid, distributed mainly to returning refugees and through food for work programs, have helped offset production shortfalls of wheat, the country’s major staple. At the same time, private international trade from neighboring countries, especially Pakistan, has also played a major role in augmenting wheat supply and stabilizing prices.This paper presents an analysis of wheat prices and market flows in Afghanistan based on results of surveys of wheat traders and millers, and econometric analysis of price movements in major markets in Afghanistan and Pakistan. In spite of food aid imports, domestic prices were not lowered below import parity levels in most major Afghan markets. Thus, the price evidence suggests that large-scale inflows of food aid, which benefited the country by providing resources for targeted food for work and other programs, did not have major price disincentive effects on domestic production, at least through mid-2003. However, following the 2003 bumper harvest, the analysis suggests that continued food aid inflows may have depressed producer prices by as much as about 15%. Moreover, given substantial prospects for rehabilitation of irrigation infrastructure, there is ample scope for increasing domestic production of wheat and decreasing import demand, so price disincentive effects of food aid remain a possibility in the future, as well.
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