The Public Works Authority ‘Ashghal’, in cooperation with the Gulf Water Sciences and Technology Association (WSTA) and the Secretariat General of the GCC, held a symposium on “The Problem of Groundwater Level Rise in Urban Areas in GCC countries.” The symposium aims to come up with policies and solutions to control this issue and raise them to decision-makers in the GCC countries. In addition to sharing scientific and applied knowledge while building the capacity of specialists in the fields of urban planning, hydrology, hydrogeology, engineering, environment, and other fields relevant to the problem of groundwater level rise in urban areas in the GCC countries, with the attendance of H.E Dr. Eng. Saad bin Ahmed Al Muhannadi, President of Ashghal, and a number of officials and academics interested in this field from Qatar and GCC countries.
On this occasion, Eng. Yousef Al Emadi, Projects Affairs Director at Ashghal said: "Through this cooperation, we look forward to discovering innovative, effective and sustainable technological solutions to control the problem of groundwater level rise in urban areas in the GCC to reduce its negative impact on the construction process, which in turn raises costs and affects the quality of projects and people’s lives.
He added: "At Ashghal, we are keen to make use of the groundwater and to implement sustainable solutions, including water use after ensuring its quality in some of the projects of the Authority, through sand washing that is used in projects and dust control at work sites.”
Eng. Abdulrahman Al Mahmoud, President of WSTA, stated that the symposium is aimed at exploring the most significant problems that are occurred in our region because of the rapid urban developments and the population growth, especially in major cities. These issues have made it challenging to harmonize the requirements of development and the large projects while preserving the infrastructure. As well as face the various impacts on the population and the surrounding environment.
He added that it was crucial for the competent authorities to follow scientific research, to gain insight on the causes of the phenomenon that has arisen in several cities in our Gulf countries and look for the scientific and practical solutions to address the problem. Accordingly, in view of the importance of this issue, the Public Works Authority ‘Ashghal’ in Qatar and the Gulf Water Sciences and Technology Association (WSTA) have agreed to hold this symposium in the presence of several experts and specialists to study the problem and the solutions applied and to identify the best remedies.
From his side, Prof. Dr. Waleed Zubari, Chairman of the Scientific Affairs and Training Committee at WSTA, Professor of the Water Resources at the Arabian Gulf University stated that there is a crucial need to find sustainable solutions to combat and control groundwater level rise. He said: “Cooperative efforts between experts from different specializations and stakeholders of different sectors is required to remedy this problem. Therefore, this symposium seeks to highlight this critical issue, study its causes and consequences, and discover practical and applicable solutions. By bringing together decision makers, executive engineers and academics specializing in the symposium, knowledge can be enhanced, innovative ideas are discussed, experiences are shared, and successful case studies and best practices are presented. This is to come up with practical and effective strategies that help control and mitigate the negative effects of groundwater level rise, to protect our urban environments and infrastructure and ensure a sustainable future for GCC countries.
This symposium provides a platform for researchers, experts, and practitioners to share their results, studies, and expertise related to this phenomenon to reach a better understanding of this problem and the potential solutions. It aims to identify best practices to effectively deal and control the groundwater level rise in urban areas in GCC and encourage cooperation and interaction between participants from different expertise, to promote a comprehensive approach and innovative and practical solutions. In addition to discovering solutions in managing shallow groundwater level in urban areas including groundwater monitoring systems, predictive modeling, water recycling, sustainable drainage techniques, discuss the principles of sustainable urban design and water-friendly urban planning.
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