An IWRM for the Lake Itasy region of Madagascar

23/01/2019

The International Office for Water (IOWater), with the support of the Rhone-Mediterranean-Corsica Water Agency, has initiated since April 2018 a project aimed at Integrated Water Resources Management of Lake Itasy (Madagascar), through the implementation of a governance structure and a management plan.

 

The Itasy Region includes Madagascar's fourth largest body of water, Lake Itasy, with an area of 3,500 ha, which is a centre of major economic activities as well as a particular ecosystem in the Malagasy highlands. Its catchment area, the perimeter of which is not precisely delimited, covers an area of approximately 677 km² at first approach. Unfortunately, the lack of a management plan for this natural area in recent decades has led to the development of various problems: overexploitation of fisheries resources, soil pollution, tree depletion and increased erosion. In addition to this physical observation, there are the problems linked to the lack of waste management and sanitation, aggravating a health situation which, beyond the limits it imposes on tourist activities, has become a major cause for concern for the health of residents.

In response to these problems, Madagascar's Ministry of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene wishes to implement IWRM, which should be strengthened in the new version of the Water Code, currently under revision.

 

 

The various missions of IOWater experts made it possible to start thinking about the planning of concrete actions to be carried out in the catchment area: water level management, drinking water supply, agro-ecology or agro-forestry measures to limit the risks of soil erosion and pollution... These perspectives for action will soon be discussed within the Management Committee. A mission focused on Water Information Systems provided an opportunity to share the French experience and make recommendations on how to produce, manage and use data.

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