Iraq could suffer a 20-per cent drop in water resources by 2050 due to climate change, the World Bank said Wednesday, warning of repercussions on growth and jobs.
Water is a crucial issue for the oil-rich country of 40 million that is facing an acute energy crisis, compounded by increasingly severe droughts and low rainfall.
“Without action, water constraints will lead to large losses across multiple sectors of the economy and come to affect more and more vulnerable people,” the World Bank’s Saroj Kumar Jha said in a statement accompanying a new report.
“By 2050, a temperature increase of one degree Celsius, and a precipitation decrease of 10 per cent would cause a 20 per cent reduction of available freshwater” in Iraq, the report said.
“Under these circumstances, nearly one-third of the irrigated land in Iraq will have no water by the year 2050.