The Efficient Use of the Water Resources and the Global Warming: The Case of North Cyprus "Water of Peace Project"

Süner M. , Kırval L.

ENERGY SOLUTIONS TO COMBAT GLOBAL WARMING, vol.33, pp.477-495, 2017 (Refereed Journals of Other Institutions) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 33
  • Publication Date: 2017
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/978-3-319-26950-4_24
  • Page Numbers: pp.477-495


The island of Cyprus has always been in a very critical geography and recently the changing strategic relations in the Eastern Mediterranean and the Middle East has further increased the importance of this beautiful island. Recently, a strategic step has been taken by the Turkish government to transport water from Turkey to the North Cyprus. For decades, the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) has been fighting with the water shortages, which also negatively influenced its agricultural production and economic development. The impact of the un-ending economic embargos on this part of the island by international community has been further exacerbated with the lack of sufficient water resources in the past decades. The recent move by the Turkish government includes building of a dam in the South-eastern Mediterranean coast of Turkey (Alakopru Dam) and the transfer of the water resources of a major river to the island by pipelines to be built under sea, floating at the depth of 250 m. It is anticipated that the project will meet the TRNC's water needs in the next 50 years. Undoubtedly, water is a crucial resource for all the countries of the region (and the mankind) and it is predicted that in the near future it can be as important as oil and gas reserves. This unique and innovative project in Northern Cyprus may inspire several similar endeavours in the region in future. Additionally, the water provision to the relatively poorer North Cyprus may change the political dynamics of the island, as it will be a catalyst for its economic development. Furthermore, the improper use of the water resources create several environmental problems and leads to global warming and draught, particularly in the Middle East, North Africa, and Asia; and because of that the scientific analysis of the Turkish government's "Water of Peace" project in TRNC is extremely important. In this context, this chapter first assesses the potential impact of the project on the ecology, climate, agriculture, economy and politics of the island. Subsequently, at the macro level, the project's potential impact on the efficient use of the world's water resources (and the global warming) is studied. Here, the research has shown that the project will increase the water resources of the island and thus positively influence its habitat. Furthermore, the humidity will also increase and thus precipitation will rise. The efficient use of potable water in a needy geography will partially eliminate the negative impact of the global warming on the region. Also, the necessary energy consumption for producing potable and irrigation water (possibly from the Sea) will cease to exist and this will positively influence the slowing down of global warming. Additionally, the potential-environment friendly-electricity production with the transported water (without necessitating a major dam or nuclear power plant) will solve the energy problem of the island and also positively influence the slowing down of the global warming. Finally, the project comparison with the "South East Anatolia Irrigation and Electricity Production Project of Turkey" is also made. In analyzing the TRNC "Water of Peace Project," the potential risks and the maintenance requirements of the project, its engineering and design are also analyzed.