Iraq launches groundwater database to reduce uncertainty in the country’s water supply
The Government of Iraq reaffirmed its commitment to tackling the ongoing water crisis this month at a national seminar in Baghdad on 3 July 2011, ushering in phase two of the new National Hydrogeological Resources Assessment Network and Database for Iraq, known as geoFIA.
Representatives of the government, academia and the international community recently met at a high-level gathering in Baghdad to inaugurate the country’s first centralized groundwater database and commission the next phase of the multi-million dollar initiative led by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). The seminar officially revealed positive phase one results of the nationwide initiative launched in 2010 by UNESCO.
GeoFIA was built by Radar Technologies International and Studio Galli Ingegneria and can be used by Iraqi experts to collect, update and analyze information on groundwater on a continual basis, enabling more effective water planning by the government.
The interactive web-based platform will help the Iraqi government to accelerate their efforts in addressing drought and other water-related problems which until now have been hindered by lack of up-to-date information on underground water.
The European Union provided the funding for Phase I of the project. In addition H.E. Jana Hybaskova, Ambassador of the EU praised the efforts of the Government and UNESCO and shared the EU’s intention to continue the support for Phase II.