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Semi–arid watershed management: the experimental farm and representative catchment of the High Mountains of Sinai Peninsula

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The need for watershed management models in the Arab Republic of Egypt - particularly in the remote arid and semi–arid desert and mountain regions - surfaced once again as one of the very demanding instruments for socio–economic and socio–ecological sustainable development. Highland watershed management and mountainous agriculture are highly impacted under the aspects of climate change, reflected in an average of seven years cyclic drought periods. Based on an extensive research–survey work in the High Mountains of Sinai Peninsula 'Middle East' (i.e., Sinai Peninsula Research: phase I '2000–2008': survey; phase II '2010–2013': analysis 'SinaiAlps Project'), this paper aims to present a semi–arid watershed management model via an ecology–based interdisciplinary context. It integratively and comparatively analyses the ecological impacts and governance aspects of Sinaitic water management attempts (i.e., small water dams construction) via modelling a representative catchment for the runoff yield in terms of landform(s) structure (i.e., water share zoning and management in mountainous agriculture units).

Keywords: watershed management, climate change, environmental carrying capacity, highlands, drylands, socio–ecology, political ecology, mountain agriculture, land use patterns, natural resources, trans–border studies, Egypt, semi–arid watersheds, experimental farm, representative catchment, Sinai Peninsula, sustainable development, drought, sustainability, ecological impact, governance, water management, dam construction, modelling, runoff yield, landform structure, water sharing zoning

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