Qatar is known for being the country with the highest levels of water consumption in the world and the government has been spending billions of riyals in order to rationalize water consumption in this desert nation.
Not an easy task for a country with high temperatures and a dry climate and where Qataris don’t pay for their water, especially that water consumption has more than doubled since 1990.
In fact, an expatriate uses an average of 82.2 cubic meters of water in a year while Qatari nationals consume 600.5 cubic meters according to a poll conducted in 2015, which means that water consumption by Qataris is eight times higher than that of expatriates.
Since the country lacks of fresh water, the country’s population depends on desalinated water. Its usage is 54 percent of total water consumption in the country and which accounts to 99.9% of drinkable water.
All of these numbers explain why the Qatar General Electricity and Water Corporation (Kahramaa) launched in 2012 a five-year initiative called Tarsheed to effectively reduce waste in domestic consumption of electricity and water and protect the country’s resources.
During a recent celebration of ‘Arab Water Day’, the Qatari Minister of Energy and Industry Dr Mohamed bin Saleh al-Sada stressed on the importance of the people’s total cooperation in that regard and that it is their responsibility “to ensure a decent livelihood for the present and future generations.”
On the other hand, billions of dollars’ worth of contracts were made by Qatar’s largest utility firms to construct new water desalination plants and storage tanks, including the QR17 billion that Kahramaa is spending on mega-reservoirs to build what they call the largest water storage expansion project in the country’s history.
As a result, the organizations aims to raise water desalination capacity to 95 million gallons per day in 2016 from 71 million gallons a day in 2011.