Water Scarcity and Pollution in Iraq

Abdu is crouching by a river, touching the water with his hand.

Iraq, particularly the Basra Governorate, is facing a severe crisis of water scarcity and pollution. This has led to the desertification of some areas, the drying up of the Basra marshes, and the destruction of the natural habitats of many animals. Consequently, families in the marshes have been displaced to other areas of the Governorate. The impact of water scarcity on the population, dependent mainly on agriculture and animal husbandry, has been significant. Any disruption in the timing of planting local crops leads to an economic disaster that affects their lives. 

The climate change that most countries of the world are witnessing, particularly in this region, has resulted in a sharp decline in rainfall in recent years. Negligence, lack of interest in the environment, and lack of awareness on how to manage water consumption are some of the reasons that lead to water scarcity. The lack of awareness on the importance of water in society, and the need to preserve it and rationalize its use exacerbates the problem. The lack of community awareness has resulted in inadequate regulation of water consumption, exacerbating the problem of water waste and wasteful usage. This has led to a rise in excess water usage, both within and across governorates. 

Young people must play a significant role in launching awareness campaigns about how to ration water consumption, as well as how to protect the environment and water bodies from pollution. Youth voices have a considerable influence on the community, and they can set up programs and campaigns to inform people about the significance of rationalizing water use and protecting water resources from pollution. 

Developing a strategy, allocating funds, making special diplomatic efforts, and paying close attention to the magnitude of this catastrophe are some of the solutions to the water issue. The immediate and direct elimination of any abuses of water quotas, whether for agricultural purposes or other uses, including home, industrial, service, and other uses, is one of the most crucial answers. Accountability must be ensured for those who oversee the abuses. 

In conclusion, the water crisis in Iraq, especially in the Basra governorate, is a severe problem that requires immediate action. Young people have a crucial role to play in launching awareness campaigns and contributing to the solution of the issue. It is essential to develop a comprehensive strategy that addresses the root causes of water scarcity and pollution and allocates the necessary funds to mitigate their effects. Accountability must be ensured to prevent abuses of water quotas, and the public must be educated on the importance of conserving water resources and rationalizing their use. Together, we can make a difference and create a better future for Iraq and its people. 


Abdu Alalem, 22, Iraq