Water is definitely physically scarce in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and the Mediterranean region with less than 1000 m3/capita/year. Water scarcity in these regions is a function of both water supply and water demand as both applies in most of the countries. Using the Falkenmark indicator the Mediterranean region will see increased deterioration in the availability of renewable water. The severe impacts of the non-availability of renewable water in these regions are cushioned by the development of desalination technology. Selection of the appropriate desalination technology, use of renewable energy and a proper method of dealing with high salinity wastewater discharge are very important measures necessary to mitigate the negative impacts of desalination activity, reduce desalination costs and make desalination sustainable and reliable. This work reviews the nature of water scarcity in the Eastern Mediterranean region and advances in solar desalination using the Northern part of Cyprus as a case study.
Keywords: solar desalination, Middle East and North Africa, MENA, Northern Cyprus, water, desalination, scarcity, aquifers, Mediterranean countries, solar still