Green Roads for Water Scoping Study in Somaliland

Together with Welthungerhilfe (WHH), we undertook a scoping study to explore the issues and opportunities for Green Roads for Water (GR4W) in Somaliland. The main activities of this study included:

  • Road assessments in the western part of Somaliland, in Awdaal and Woqooyi Galbeed Regions
    • Detailed road assessment along 110 km Hargeisa-Dareselam-Garbodadar stretch
    • Rapid road assessment along 177 km Garbodadar-Lughayaaa and Garbodadar-Baki-Borama stretches
    • Survey along Borama-Gabiley-Hargeisa stretch to identify existing practices and assess the possibility of implementing GR4W on existing tarmacked roads
  • Introductory meeting and introductory field visits along the Hargeisa-Dareselam road (with experts from WHH, RDA, MoERD, WFP, FAO, UNDP, MoA, NRM experts)
  • Regional and National workshop to discuss the findings of the road assessments and the way forward together with all relevant stakeholders

Some of the problems observed during this study include very little water availability for agriculture and livestock, aridity and low biomass production, poor soils, accelerated gully erosion and degradation of existing vegetation cover. It was also observed that road development in Somaliland is at its early stage but now it is becoming a priority with 11 current road projects which 5 are under construction. One of the very interesting findings was the significant potential to harvest beneficial water along roads (300 m3 of water can be harvested per kilometre of road per year). Based on the findings above and the discussions with local stakeholders was concluded that there is a huge potential for GR4W in Somaliland. Various simple and affordable GR4W measures can be applied to harvest water from roads for irrigation, livestock drinking water and groundwater recharge, while at the same time protecting the road infrastructure and the environment around roads. Apart from the technical aspects, since GR4W is a multi-sectoral task that must take place at the landscape/watershed level, coordination and collaboration among major stakeholder is highly required.

During the regional and national workshops, a common understanding of GR4W was forged and consensus was built on the way forward. The immediate actions that have been agreed include the integration of GR4W into the programs of relevant ministries (Livestock, Forestry, Range, Environment, Water, Transport & Roads, Rural Development) as well as into the upcoming national Development Plan III.
For more information, please access the full report through this link.

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Last modified: February 18, 2022