World bank says Middle East and North African Countries at Highest Risk for Water Stress

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A recently released Water Stress Index assesses the vulnerability of 159 countries to water stress and the risks it poses to governments, populations and business. The five countries at highest risk include Egypt, Kuwait, United Arab Emirates, Libya, and Saudi Arabia. Countries in the Middle East and North African region only receive one percent of the world's precipitation of which 85 percent is lost through evaporation.

China and India are using more than 80 percent of their renewable water resources putting them at "high risk" of dwindling water supplies. Some cities in China are already using water supply at a higher rate than available supply according to the study done by UK-based global risk advisory firm Maplecroft.

In both China and India, high demand for water is driven by climbing populations and rising industrial and agricultural use. According to the United Nation's Food and Agricultural Organization, India's annual growth for industrial water withdrawal is 8.91 percent. In China withdrawals for municipal water is rising at 10.38 percent.