Beirut, 4 November 2010

The Arab Forum for Environment and Development (AFED) presented its latest documentary The Last Drop, at the opening session of AFED’s third annual conference at Habtoor Grand Hotel in Beirut.

The Last Drop takes viewers on an interesting 12 minute tour around different Arab countries, located in the world’s driest region and known to have the poorest fresh water supplies. It shows how Arab countries are increasingly vulnerable to disastrous impacts of climate change, mainly due to fast population growth, increasing demand on water and lack of sustainable water management strategies. It also highlights the decline of annual per capita availability in the Arab world to one-quarter today, compared to 1960 levels.

Najib Saab, AFED’s Secretary General, warns that the Arab World will be facing thirst and hunger, unless rapid and effective measures are taken to address the water scarcity dilemma. He points out that “13 Arab countries are among the world’s 19 most water-scarce nations, and the only countries in the region that will pass the water scarcity test in 2025, at above 1,000 cubic meters per capita, will be Iraq and Sudan.”

Mahmoud Abu Zeid, President of the Arab Water Council, notes the Arab region covers 5% of the world area, while it is endowed with no more than 1% of fresh water. The documentary also features the following prominent speakers: Ayman Abou Hadid, Director of Central Laboratory for Agricultural Climate in Cairo, Hammou Laamrani, Project Coordinator of Regional Water Demand Initiative at IDRC, and AUB professors Musa Nimah and Hamed Assaf. They discuss water re-use, demand management, virtual water and the impact of climate change.

Saab concludes by urging governments to take action and implement sustainable water management policies, as Arabs cannot afford wasting a single drop of water anymore.

The Last Drop is produced by AFED in cooperation with Future TV, and is the third AFED documentary after Arab Environment: Testimony of an Old Man in 2008 and Wet and Dry in 2009.

Available with English subtitles, the documentary will be broadcast on regional television networks and used as educational material at schools.

The documentary is available at AFED website: