Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Memenuhi Kebutuhan Air di Timur Tengah

FEZ – Temuan World Water Development Report keluaran PBB menegaskan kekhawatiran banyak pihak: ratusan ribu penduduk Timur Tengah dan Afrika Utara (Middle East and North Africa/MENA) – terutama Aljazair, Yordania, Libya, Maroko, Palestina, Sudan, Suriah, dan Yaman – menghadapi kelangkaan air terburuk dalam sejarah pada tahun 2016 ini. Alih-alih berkah, justru tertimpa musibah. Padahal negara-negara tersebut mengupayakan pertumbuhan ekonomi dan diversifikasi.

Banyak faktor berkontribusi pada situasi sekarang, diantaranya perubahan iklim, desertifikasi, polusi air, dan penyalahgunaan sumber daya alam. Keterbatasan informasi, pendidikan, dan komunikasi semakin memperburuk kendala-kendala yang ada, karena ini menonjolkan rendahnya kesadaran dan komitmen terhadap praktik-praktik ramah lingkungan. Belum lagi ditambah dengan penanggulangan dan manajemen risiko oleh pemerintah yang sangat lemah – umumnya terkait dengan konflik dan krisis lain – mengakibatkan situasinya menjadi teramat suram.

Aljazair, misalnya, menghadapi kekeringan terburuk dalam 50 tahun terakhir. Sebagai negara dengan pertanian yang sangat mengandalkan curah hujan, akibat infrastruktur yang masih terbelakang, tahun ini hasil panen serealia merosot 40%. Meski kaya akan minyak dan gas, Aljazair gagal menjamin ketersediaan sumber-sumber air yang terjangkau bagi warganya, hanya salah satu dari masalah-masalah lain seperti langkanya kesempatan kerja. Akibatnya, negara ini diguncang dengan protes keras oleh warganya.

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