For decades, the city of Sulaymaniyah, Kurdistan Iraq has been disposing of its garbage at an open dump on the hillsides overlooking the Tanjero River, a small river in the upper Diyala river basin, a tributary to the Tigris River. This river has a direct effect on the residents of the area because they use this water for drinking and farming, Waterkeepers Iraq - Kurdistan started the project “Tanjero River Threat Assessment and Outreach Project “, to raise awareness about the environment, threats and the pollutions that surround the Tanjero river.
This activity is under Civil Society project, Implemented by Waterkeepers Iraq Kurdistan, in partnership with Humat Dijlah, in coordination with the Department of Environment of Sulaimaniyah, Funded by the European Union and Implemented by the United Nations Development Programme.
In cooperation with Waterkeepers Iraq, Vim Foundation orchestrated a sailing expedition with the intention of raising awareness in light of the pollution of the water resources and the water canals of Kurdistan. During the campaign, various activities were carried out such as a paddling trip in the Sanjean Village to Dukan Lake, cleaning the area’s water canals, and the River of Light festival.
Goethe Institut Iraq visited Culture Factory to see our ongoing gallery 'Reconnecting With Our Life-Blood', which was part of Spotlight Iraq project, and also visited our joined environment office with Humat Dijlah, where we work protect our rivers and environment.
An Interview with Gali Kurdistan Radio and TV About the state of our rivers, drought, dams, solutions, suggestions and how our work as environmentalists and waterkeepers effected the society and in result more people are passionate and empathise more toward environmental concerns. and ofcourse a lot more needs to be done as more and more issues arise due to drought and decrease in water levels.
to see the full interview in Kurdish visit the following link:
In 2014, Nabil Musa of the NGO Waterkeepers Iraq-Kurdistan undertook a trip along the Tigris in northern Iraq near the Mosul Dam, where he and his colleagues encountered farmers along the river who said they would no longer be able to farm in the area because of conflicts and climate change.
“The landscape especially around the river, it changes because of the climate change plus human impact as well,” Musa said. “I think we’re going to be the first hit when it comes to climate change and the impact of it. It’s already here and we are not ready at all for that.”
Click here to go to the full article.
Waterkeepers Iraq arranged a workshop for third grade students at the Gallery Karga - Culture Factory. The workshop started with introducing the students to the gallery and then what we do as Waterkeepers. After that, a set of activities designed in a fun and playful way to teach the students about water pollution and problems of plastic disposals, which the students responded very well to and all of them participated and learned the importance of keeping our rivers and water sources clean and healthy.
Special Thanks to Margaret Private School.
This activity is part of the Human and Environmental Security in Iraq in Covid Time project.
Title of Seminar: Death of the Rivers
In spite of protecting our environment, Nature Organization Kurdistan prepared a free seminar through Green School and supported by College of Agricultural - Engineering Sciences.
The seminar was presented by Nabil Musa- Waterkeeper and the founder of Waterkeepers Iraq- Kurdistan organisation. Discussing the following subjects:
More than 150 participants attended the seminar online.
Waterkeepers Iraq participated in The Guan Eden conference in Baghdad arranged by Goethe Institute and Humat Dijlah.
The aim of the conference was to network between activists and environmental experts, as well as government agencies such as the Ministry of Environment and Water Resources, and to discuss ways to increase environmental awareness in Iraq.
Framework of the Guan Eden conference was prepared on 6 and 7 of April in Baghdad discussing the following topics:
- The role of women in protecting the environment
- The effects of climate change on Iraq
- The experience of civil society organizations in raising awareness against hunting endangered birds
- Integrated management of wetlands
- Deep discussions about the Paris Agreement
- Water pollution
The conference was attended by environmental experts, activists and government officials considering all health measurements.
Happy World Water Day from all Waterkeepers around the world
For too long, low-income, indigenous and marginalized populations have been put in harm’s way for the sake of big business and profits. All citizens of the world should have access to swimmable, drinkable and fishable water. Too often, communities that are denied these rights face daunting challenges in standing up to Big Agriculture, King Coal and their friends in power. – Marc Yaggi, Executive Director, Waterkeeper Alliance.
As part of the Human and Environmental Security in Iraq in Covid Time project, Waterkeepers Iraq conducted an online training for environmentalists and activists.
On the course of three days from 25th of February to 27th, two and half hours each at 5pm till 7:30pm, the online training was conducted focusing on three main topics which were COVID-19 itself, Prevention Methods and campaigning and also It’s Psychological effects.
The Participants were asked to fill a google form one week prior to the scheduled time, the forms gave info about their location, education and background. We chose activists and enthusiasts based on the filled forms and 20 participants were selected.
The exhibition showcasing photography and poems from the project “Reconnecting with Out Lifeblood” opened on 13th November 2020.
The photos and poetry told layers of stories about the livelihood of people living along the Tigris River and it’s tributaries from North of Iraq to the South. The photos told stories of lives intricately connected with the rivers and Iraqi marshes and explored some of the destruction from pollution, sewage, overfishing and unsustainable oil production.
The opening was a successful day with strict measures to avoid any possible spread of COVID-19, and was well attended.
A photography exhibition visualizes a journey from Kurdistan's mountains through rivers to the marshlands in Iraq.
Facebook Event link: https://fb.me/e/3hM1NnEzc
The exhibition starts on November 13, 2020 at 3:00 PM
Location: Metrography Gallery / Behind Daik Park
- We will follow all necessary safety instructions during the exhibition.
- The exhibition is open for 10 days.
FINES COLLECTED FROM POLLUTERS IN KURDISTAN REGION RARELY USED TO FUND ENVIRONMENTAL EFFORTS: OFFICIALS - NRTtv report
SULAIMANI — In theory, fines levied by the government against polluters in the Kurdistan Region are supposed to fund environmental initiatives and expand inspections to uncover additional violations, but current and former officials at the Kurdistan Regional Government’s (KRG) Environmental Board say that the money is routinely diverted for other uses.
As a result, those charged by the government with leading environmental protection measures are deprived of dedicated and steady financing streams that are “more than enough to provide support” for the Board’s operations and allow it to expand its activities, former head of the Environmental Board Hallo Mustafa Askari told NRT in an interview.
Instead the money goes directly to the KRG’s Ministry of Finance and Economy, which rarely allocates it back to the Board.
“Our laboratories are not up to date. We need new technologies to inspect factories and cities. We have one air quality monitoring station in Sulaimani and one in Erbil…both of which are out of operation due to broken parts,” Askari said.
“It’s a disaster,” he added.
Waterkeepers Iraq, Humat Dijla, X-line and OCSO organized this Get Together (Conference) for environmental lovers to bring in Organizations, groups and individual that are working within this sector, with the focus on how we can help the environment together with more efforts, better rearrangement of ourselves, and better cooperation and negotiation with each other.
It’s well known that any project for the betterment of the environment in Sulaimani and Kurdistan specially and Iraq in general is facing a lot of struggles and obstacles, even tho the projects are willing and aiming to improve the nature, wildlife, and life in general.
And also, pollution is getting worse day by day, and accumulating specifically in south of Iraq causing different kinds of crisis, thus we need to act all together and have a bigger impact as a force one with nature to restore our environment.
Waterkeepers Iraq-Kurdistan in partnership with Humatdijlah and Environmentkeepers organized a full day of water sports and clean up of -Ashkawta Ruxhaw island in Dukan Reservioir with American University of Sulaymaniyah (AUIS) students.
"We are as a Waterkeeper in general, globally, against dam- particularly this type of dam. The GAP (http://bianet.org/english/environment/215974-hasankeyf-initiative-these-are-the-days-of-apocalypse-for-hasankeyf-and-tigris-valley) project planned in the 1950s Ilisu dam is only one of those 22 Dams. Ilisu dam they started very quickly because it will destroy a Kurdish village, unfortunately the history of this area is very rich, this will create bitter misery among the community not only Kurdish but all communities. WE are advocating against this dam because we don’t want this to happen, the river is uniting communities."
For the full transcript click ' Read More '