An Egyptian delegation of water treatment experts visited Iraq this month for talks with Iraqi officials on addressing an acute water crisis in the Arab country.
The Ministry of Irrigation and Water Resources said June 20 that the Egyptian delegation discussed a proposal for building a water desalination plant on the Euphrates River. The station will be used to purify and desalinate seawater to help ease water shortages in southern Iraq.
Iraq was known in ancient times as Mesopotamia, or the land between two rivers — the Tigris and the Euphrates. The country is facing its worst drought in decades amid lack of rainfall and poor management of water resources.
According to the United Nations Environment Program, Iraq ranks as the fifth most vulnerable country in the world to climate change. Last year, the World Bank warned that southern Iraq is already exceeding “critical water quality thresholds,” often too contaminated for people to use.