The decade of the 1990s has seen an awakening understanding by the global community of the importance of freshwater for societal and environmental vitality. In 1994, the Scientific Committee on Water Research (SCOWAR) was established by the International Council for Scientific Unions (ICSU) to address frontier freshwater-related science issues. This paper is SCOWAR's review of current trends and burning needs in selected areas of water resources research. The key future concerns to be served by the results of the research brought under review by SCOWAR are identified as equitable sharing of water resources and demand management, soil moisture for agriculture, water and health, ecological consequences of hydrological change, and improving data collection and assessment. SCOWAR also perceives immediate intellectual challenges in a number of other areas, such as, inter alia, multiple-scale problems, sustainability of reservoirs, dynamics of freshwater ecosystems. There is a general recognition that unavailability of water in sufficient quality and quantity has been and will continue to be an increasingly important constraint on socio-economic development. But the situation is not the same all over the world. SCOWAR is concerned that much of the increased pressure occurs and will occur in particular in Sub-Saharan Africa where high population growth and the desire to improve living standards expand water requirements.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Water Science and Technology