About the Project

Posted on 27 Jan 2011

Strengthening National Capacity to Conduct Comprehensive Water-Resources Assessments

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is undertaking a project aimed at enabling Member States to enhance the availability and sustainability of freshwater (with an emphasis on groundwater) through science based, comprehensive assessments of national water resources.

The primary goal of the IAEA Water Availability Enhancement Project is to strengthen national capacities for collecting, managing and interpreting water resources data, and to use advanced techniques to improve resource management. Through this project, the IAEA will work with partners and Member States to identify the existing gaps in national hydrological information and understanding, with an emphasis on groundwater.

The IAEA Water Availability Enhancement Project does not intend to undertake water resources assessments; conducting assessments is the province of the Member States. Instead, the programme will focus on fundamental hydrological data and understanding in the areas of water quality, water quantity, and water use, as well as vulnerability and sustainability of resources.


Posted on 27 Jan 2011

The IAEA Water Availability Enhancement Project

The IAEA Water Availability Enhancement Project is being undertaken to build capacity within Member States to gather and use scientific information to fully assess the availability and quality of their own water resources. This will be achieved by assisting countries to identify gaps in hydrologic information and understanding, to improve national capacities for collecting, managing, and interpreting water resources data, and to enable the use of advanced techniques to simulate hydrologic systems for the purpose of resource management. The Water Availability Enhancement Project will focus on the fundamental hydrological data and understanding that are essential for conducting a comprehensive national water resources assessment. Fully realized comprehensive assessments will include assessments of water quality, water quantity, and water use, as well as resource vulnerability and sustainability.

The IAEA Water Availability Enhancement Project will build on and compliment other international, regional, and national initiatives to provide decision makers with reliable tools for better management of their water resources. The project aims to assist Member States in gathering hydrological data which will be owned by the Member States and used or shared with others as they see fit. It is hoped that better information availability at a national level will induce greater cooperation in the area of transboundary resources, but the IAEA will neither create its own database nor predicate its assistance on the condition that gathered information be shared with others.


Posted on 27 Jan 2011

Side Event on IAEA´s Role in Sustainable Water Resources Management - 23 September 2010, Vienna

During the IAEA´s 54th General Conference, IAEA Deputy Director General Werner Burkart hosted a side event on the IAEA´s role in sustainable water resources management. The event featured senior officials who in their capacities represented Member States concerned about the growing challenge of water resource management.

Speakers included:

  1. His Excellency Mr. Glyn Davis - Ambassador of the United States Mission to International Organizations in Vienna
  2. His Excellency Mr. Fortunato de la Pena - Undersecretary of the Department of Science and Technology of the Philippines
  3. Dr. Srikumar Banerjee, Chairman of Atomic Energy Commission of India
  4. Willi Struckmeier, President of the International Association of Hydrogeologists

During the event there was unanimous recognition of the efforts of the IAEA's Water Resources Programme and expressions of support to the IAEA's planned and ongoing activities. His Excellency Mr. Fortunato, as a representative of the Philippines, the first Member State to participate in a Pilot Project of the Water Availability Enhancement Project, expressed the importance his government is placing on the work of the IAEA in water management and his appreciation for the work performed so far. The planned activities are being met with great enthusiasm.

Posted on 27 Jan 2011

Consultants’ Meeting - 4 to 6 May, 2010, IAEA in Vienna

To ensure successful implementation of the complementary approach of the IAEA Water Availability Enhancement (IWAVE) Project and to avoid duplication with existing initiatives, the IAEA organized a Consultants' Meeting in Vienna from 4 to 6 May, 2010. The meeting was conducted to provide an opportunity for nine participating international experts to discuss the project concept and the possible cooperation of, and coordination with, partners interested in implementing the project.

Experts collectively discussed the Water Availability Enhancement Project and offered valuable comments on how to make use of existing support within the hydrological community, including hydrological training and experts. They also discussed the possible role and contribution of other partners who may wish to collaborate with the IAEA in implementing the project.

The participants agreed on the following Recommended Action:

Recommended Action

The IAEA, in conjunction with interested partners, will initiate a pilot study with one or more selected countries. The IAEA will lead in collaborating with selected countries to identify and characterize gaps in national water resources assessment, to develop a work programme intended to build local capacities to address those hydrological gaps, and to meet the needs of work programmes through its own technical assistance programmes and/or by locating and recommending expert funding support, technological support, and training within the international hydrological community.

Contact Us

IAEA Water Availability Enhancement Project


Responsible/Contact: Isotope Hydrology Section | Last update: 03 March 2011