Food security expert and infrastructure engineer Fahad Al-Attiya discusses the issue Qatar faces of a non-existent water supply and growing demand in this water source keynote.
Qatar went from a country with 11,000 people living a nomadic lifestyle with absolutely no availability to water or energy to a country almost facing a food security crises because of its ridiculously high water consumption rate.
As the water source keynote mentions, Qatar is the only country in the world, and in history, to grow 15% every year for the past five years with no water resources -- Qatar is now amongst the highest worldwide consumers of water at 430 liters per capital for only 1.7 million people.
After discovering oil in 1939, the country was able to change completely, urbanizing its nomadic dwellers and employing new technologies that in turn turned Qatar into a case study because it went “from having no water what so ever to consuming water to the highest degree,” says Al-Attia.
Qatar adapted to the water issue by employing desalination techniques, which employs energy as the key factor to keep water running in this desert nation. With a growing demand and growing population, the Gulf region had to turn to the oil-burning desalination to quench their thirst.