Expats use seven times less water than Qataris

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Water consumption per capita by expatriates is seven to eight times less than that of Qataris.

Official estimates for 2015 show that while an expatriate used an average of 82.2 cubic metres of water in a year, the figure for nationals was 600.5 cubic metres.

Estimates for 2014 put the average consumption for expatriates at 76.8 cubic metres in the year whereas the figure is 569.7 cubic metres for citizens. It is estimated that per capita water use would go up to 632.9 cubic metres for Qatari citizens this year while the average for expats would rise to 87.9 cubic metres. 

Average per capita water consumption annually has more than doubled in the country from 182 cubic metres in 1990 to 400 cubic metres in 2012. It was 230 cubic metres in 2000.

The population has, on the other hand, risen by an average 4.7 percent annually between 2000 and 2012. These figures have been released by the Permanent Population Committee and accessed through various official sources. The figures appear as part of the Committee’s latest study on population and water use in the country as part of Qatar National Vision 2030.

This is the eighth study since the population panel began conducting such surveys in the year 2008.

The aim of the study is to assess the sustainability of Qatar’s water resources in the light of the fact that the country gets very low rainfall (annual average 76mm) and has no rivers.

The country is, thus, heavily dependent on desalinated water. Its use is 54 percent of total water use in the country.

Some 36 percent of the water used is ground water but that is used exclusively in agriculture. The remaining 10 percent water usage is that of treated sewage water which is used in public parks and for ground water injection.

The study is divided into eight chapters and makes recommendations at the end. One of the key recommendations is to expand strategic water reserves to meet any emergency that may befall the country in future. 

The study says that water distributor Kahramaa (Qatar General Electricity and Water Corporation) expects the demand for water to double between 2011 and 2020, from 1.1 million cubic metres a day to 2.1 million cubic metres. 

As a result, Kahramaa wants water desalination capacity raised to 95 million gallons per day this year from 71 million gallons a day in 2011. 

It is interesting to note that despite increasing agricultural production, Qatar has succeeded in reducing water usage in the sector.

The usage came down to 45 percent by 2011 and is expected to further go down to 40 percent by 2020. During this period, agricultural production is, though, expected to grow by three percent.

The usage of water by homes, offices, the government sector and commercial enterprises is expected to grow to 58 percent by 2020 from 54 percent in 2011.

Water usage in the industrial sector grew by one percent until 2011 and is expected to double by 2020. (Source / Image)