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Open AccessArticle

Spatio-Temporal Pattern in the Changes in Availability and Sustainability of Water Resources in Afghanistan

School of Civil Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM), Johor Bahru 81310, Malaysia
Department of Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Sciences, Federal University Dutse, Dutse P.M.B. 7156, Nigeria
Faculty of Engineering and Technology, Arab Academy for Science, Technology and Maritime Transport (AASTMT), Cairo 2033 - Elhorria, Egypt
Department of Petroleum, Koya Technical Institute, Erbil Polytechnic University, Erbil 44001, Kurdistan, Iraq
College of Hydraulic and Environmental Engineering, China Three Gorges University, Yichang 443002, China
Department of Environmental Engineering, College of Engineering, Knowledge University, Erbil 44001, Kurdistan, Iraq
State Key Laboratory of Hydrology-Water Resources and Hydraulic Engineering, Nanjing Hydraulic Research Institute, Nanjing 210029, China
Research Center for Climate Change, Ministry of Water Resources, Nanjing 210029, China
Department of Engineering & Design, Staffordshire University, Stoke-on-Trent ST4 2DE, UK
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2019, 11(20), 5836;
Received: 19 September 2019 / Revised: 16 October 2019 / Accepted: 18 October 2019 / Published: 21 October 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainability of Water Resources in the Developing Cities)
Water is gradually becoming scarce in Afghanistan like in many other regions of the globe. The objective of this study was to evaluate the spatial changes in the availability and sustainability of water resources in Afghanistan. The Terrestrial Water Storage (TWS) data of the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) satellite obtained from three different institutes, having 1° × 1° spatial resolution for the period 2002–2016 was used for this purpose. Sen’s slope method was used to assess the rate of change, and the Modified Mann–Kendall test was used for the evaluation of the significance of trends in TWS. After, the concept of reliability–resiliency–vulnerability (RRV) was used for assessing the spatial distribution of sustainability in water resources. The results revealed a significant decrease in water availability in the country over the last 15 years. The decrease was found to be highest in the central region where most of the population of the country resides. The reliability in water resources was found high in the northeast Himalayan region and low in the southwest desert; resilience was found low in the central region, while vulnerability was found high in the south and the southeast. Overall, the water resources of the country were found most sustainable in the northeast and southwest and least in the south and the central parts. The maps of water resource sustainability and the changes in water availability produced in the present study can be used for long-term planning of water resources for adaptation to global changes. Besides, those can be used for the management of water resources in a sustainable and judicious manner. View Full-Text
Keywords: GRACE; terrestrial water storage; sustainability; trends; Afghanistan GRACE; terrestrial water storage; sustainability; trends; Afghanistan
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Sediqi, M.N.; Shiru, M.S.; Nashwan, M.S.; Ali, R.; Abubaker, S.; Wang, X.; Ahmed, K.; Shahid, S.; Asaduzzaman, M.; Manawi, S.M.A. Spatio-Temporal Pattern in the Changes in Availability and Sustainability of Water Resources in Afghanistan. Sustainability 2019, 11, 5836.

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