Project Profile

Re-thinking water storage for climate change adaptation in Sub-Saharan Africa

Duration : April 21, 2008 - April 21, 2011
(Extended to October 31, 2011)

Variability in rainfall and temperature mean that in many places access to fresh water is unpredictable. As the world’s climate changes, increased variability in precipitation and higher temperatures will pose great challenges for agriculture’s use of fresh water. Water storage is a key approach to adaptation. However, the value of different types of agricultural water storage may alter and needs to be re-evaluated in light of climate change. Great care must be taken to ensure that future investments in water storage do not undermine poor people‘s livelihoods, but rather contribute to a safety net for those least capable of coping with climate change. In this project, through multi-disciplinary research conducted at different scales in the Nile and Volta Basins, we are developing methods for evaluating the effectiveness and suitability of all water storage types under existing conditions and possible future climate.

Location(s): Ethiopia, Ghana
Project Contact: McCartney, M.
Donor(s): GTZ/BMZ

Farmers cultivating lettuce, while another farmer digs a small canal (marwa) with a donkey, Egypt. Photo: cc: Hamish John Appleby/IWMI