Nile River at Aswan

Egypt, Gift of the Nile

Barry Iverson

The Nile, Egypt.

Nile States’ Water Pressure

Egypt has been called “the gift of the Nile,” its rich delta soils home to the region’s breadbasket for millennia. Now, with several nations claiming several thousand years of historical rights to the river, some of those rights are being contested with the building of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance dam. Until recently, the source and producing countries of the Nile have historically underconsumed its waters for intensive agriculture, industrial, and hydro-electrical power generation. The construction of the dam has changed that dynamic, raising existential issues for both Egypt and Ethiopia, which is finally utilizing its natural right to exploit the riches of the Nile waters.

The potential for conflict over water sharing between the 11 riparian Nile basin states, and more specifically between Egypt and Ethiopia, is a lingering prospect. The need to take bold steps and embrace cooperation and co-existence with its fellow Nile Basin Initiative states is one of the many challenges facing Egypt today.