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Taylor, E.D. and Bethune, S. 1998. Management, conservation and research of internationally shared watercourses in southern Africa - Namibian experience with the Okavango River and rivers of the eastern Caprivi. Southern African Journal of Aquatic Sciences, 24(1-2): 36-46


Description:

Management, conservation and research of internationally shared watercourses in southern Africa - Namibian experience with the Okavango River and rivers of the eastern Caprivi.

Summary / Notes:

Although the emphasis of the recent National Rivers Research Initiative (now the Research Programme for the Management of Rivers) in South Africa was on river research in that country, the reality is that in southern Africa many watercourses are shared by more than one country. Therefore a central issue in integrated river basin management and development should be the recognition of the principle of international joint planning, conservation, monitoring and research. Co-operation and a better understanding of shared waters would prevent deleterious impacts, not only in the country where they occur, but also in those downstream. With this in mind, since the early 1980s Namibia has worked on joint cross-border projects in efforts to manage and conserve her shared water bodies. These include joint river gauging exercises, biological control of Saivinia molesta in the eastern Caprivi region and, more recently, the application of a biological monitoring technique, the South African Scoring System version 4, to north-eastern perennial rivers. The formation of the Joint Permanent Water Commission between Botswana and Namibia enabled the Departments of Water Affairs of both countries to work together on their shared rivers. The establishment of the Permanent Okavango River Basin Water Commission between Angola, Botswana and Namibia in 1994 improved this co-operation even further. Namibia and its' counterparts are thus committed to sharing information, co-ordinating research and monitoring activities and to undertaking detailed studies to improve their knowledge of these shared systems. Such cross-border co-operation is vital for the survival of shared river systems not only as ecological entities in their own right, but also as sources of water, power and the other resources they provide, both directly and indirectly, to the human and wildlife populations that they support. Keywords:rnInternational rivers, management, planning, aquatic weeds, rnbiomonitoring, Namibia, Botswana, Angola.

Year: 1998

Type: Journal Article

URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/10183469.1998.9631410#.VLjVvmc5ApE


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