Two-Thirds of the World to Suffer Water Scarcity in 10 Years

The secretary of the IUESA said that some experts have estimated that about two-thirds of the world’s population will suffer from severe or relative water scarcity by 2025.

The Secretary of the Iran Urban Economics Scientific Association (IUESA), Seyyed Mohsen Tabatabaei, made the remarks, noting that that global demand for water follows the extreme growth in urbanization.

He underlined that water and its resources remain core issues related to sustainable development, and that access to proper drinking water is one of the most important goals of the third millennium; “Food security, health and the environment are all affected by water.”

Saying that water leads to the improvement of social welfare and overall growth and the livelihoods of billions of people worldwide, he added, “Water is the source of many development vertices, but we can see worrying trends globally, to the extent that some experts claim that conflicts, tensions and civil, regional and international wars will be over water access in the not-too-distant future. Therefore, this issue requires more precise attention.”

Tabatabaei highlighted that the global demand for water is largely following urbanization growth, macro-economic policies, globalization of trade, and changes in the diet of the world population, adding, “Studies indicate that global demand for water will increase 55% by 2050.”

Warning about an increasing growth in the need for water, the urban expert said, “Currently, the status of water resources is worrying, since groundwater levels have fallen by 20% and many parts of the world are faced with a lack of water. In the meantime, some experts have forecast that about two-thirds of the world’s population will suffer from severe or relative water scarcity by 2025.”

“Statistics indicate a shocking reality; 80% of the world’s population has access to only 20% of the world’s safe drinking water. In order to have favourable coverage of water and sanitation in the world, just in developing countries, investment worth $ 103bn is needed in the water and sanitation sector annually,” Tabatabaei stressed.

Emphasizing that city management should make specific decisions to reduce water consumption, Tabatabaei deemed it necessary to have a scientific and comprehensive view regarding water consumption management, so that available resources can meet the needs of urban residents in the future.


  1. First we melt the ice caps, then you people start complaining about that, so we try to stop it, and suddenly we don’t have enough water? You people are never happy!

  2. We do indeed need to use water better in farming. An estimated 92% of all fresh water is used in agriculture. It takes 5300 liters of water to grow and process a dollar’s worth of grain, and cereals account for 27% of world water use. Meat production and dairy represent 22% and 7%. Nationally, China, India, and the United States are responsible for almost 38% of water use, the US because its imports “embody” a lot of water use elsewhere. About a fifth of water use is traded in this way.
    Do we have the technology to use water better in farming? Indeed so. We have bred aridity tolerant crops and biotech will greatly enhance this. Israel has experimented with salt water irrigation of rice and barley. We can irrigate precisely, and the Peruvian desert, for example, is going green all along the coast line as drip irrigation spreads. Overhead views, soil conductivity measurements and so on allow water to be allocated accurately.
    We can also change what we eat. Meat is ridiculously costly in land use, emissions and water consumption. We can grow it better, and we can stop eating so much of it. We should, perhaps, revert to historical habits, and see meat as a garnish, not the centrepiece of a meal.