During the last years, the Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture (MEWA) initiated an ambitious program for the investigations of its major surface and groundwater resources, for the monitoring of these resources, for the study of hydrological resources (research side), and for the management of the resources (management side). While most of these tasks have been completed or are about to come to an end, the implementation of most of the necessary measures is in its very early stages and hampered by the increasing workload in the ministry. The still rapidly increasing population mainly counteracts the successes the Saudi government and MEWA have achieved in sustainable resources water management through its reforms. In addition, newer and more precise predictions of the effects of climate change indicate that Saudi Arabia will be affected more than had been assumed only a decade ago.
To make a transition from the current patterns of water administration to sound water management mode, two things must happen.
First, there is strong need to strengthen the technical and organizational capacities of the MEWA to deal with the triple challenge of water exploitation and distribution (operational side), research for additional resources and cutting-edge technologies to satisfy the increasing demand (research side), and rigid control and administration of all water-related aspects (control side).
Second, a sound information base covering data on groundwater availability, quality, withdrawal, and usage is about to be put in place.
The transformation of this information into an all-encompassing water resources management requires sustained long-term efforts, especially since the MEWA has limited capacity and experience in this field. An UNDP program has been designed to initiate a systematic process of capacity development to help in sustainable development of water resources and management of water-related affairs the Kingdom to ensure permanent and sufficient supply.
Duties and Responsibilities
SCOPE OF WORK AND DELIVERABLES
Objective within the Framework of the UNDP Project
MEWA has recently established the National Center for Water Research and Studies (NCWRS), which will take care of initiating and planning of water-related projects and their implementation under supervision of MEWA. Ultimately, it shall be the national governing institution for all water-related applied and purely scientific research and studies. It will also host the National Water Database.
Groundwater is still the dominant water supplier in the Kingdom. A thorough documentation and evaluation of the groundwater resources is ongoing, but needs additional increased efforts to evaluate secondary aquifers and remote areas.
In order to overcome the aging infrastructure, new wells and well fields have to be planned and constructed, while many of the existing ones need assessment of their status and recommendations, what to do with them.
Surface water harvesting is considered a valuable and promising source for additional water resources for the Kingdom. Several dams are present, which will be a primary source for these resources through injection, mainly in wadi aquifers. These wadis need detailed hydrogeological investigations.
Hence, MEWA has asked UNDP for help in the search for an International Expert in Hydrogeology with ample experience in geology and hydrogeology of aquifer systems and concomitantly, experience in well design and construction.
Scope of Work of the UNDP Expert within the Framework of this Project
The tasks and responsibilities of the UNDP Expert are to:
EXPECTED KEY DELIVERABLES
Expected Output 1st year
25% of inventory completed.
Reporting requirements, frequency, format and deadlines
The Consultant will report directly to the CTA. Together, they will develop a mutually agreed upon quarterly work plan with key milestones and KPIs. The Consultant will submit a quarterly progress report against these milestones.
Required Skills and Experience
QUALIFICATIONS and REQUIREMENTS
Education: MSc or PhD degree in Hydrogeology or Geological Sciences related to hydrogeological exploration and reservoir management – a relevant multi-disciplinary background is considered useful;
Hydrogeologist / Hydrologist
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
Riyadh, , SA