Iraqi Ministry of Environment vows action as Tigris and Euphrates Rivers face pollution crisis

BAGHDAD — Iraq’s iconic Tigris and Euphrates rivers are facing a pollution crisis as waste disposal continues to contaminate their waters, prompting urgent action from the Iraqi Ministry of Environment to safeguard these vital waterways.

Amidst growing concerns, the Iraqi Ministry of Environment has pledged to address the alarming pollution levels in the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, acknowledging the significant threat posed by human activities, particularly waste dumping, to the water quality.

Iraq, like many nations worldwide, grapples with the consequences of climate change, with the country ranking among the five most rapidly affected by environmental shifts. With a population of 43 million, Iraq heavily relies on the Tigris and Euphrates rivers for drinking water, agriculture, and other essential needs.

Beyond individual actions, businesses, shops, and factories also contribute to river pollution, releasing toxins and pollutants that further degrade the water quality.

Iraq boasts approximately 18 water purification facilities, collectively producing around 700,000 cubic meters of contaminated water annually, much of which finds its way into the rivers.

Despite the severity of the issue, the government has yet to implement effective solutions. In response, the Iraqi Ministry of Environment has initiated efforts to combat river pollution, forming a committee comprising representatives from various governmental bodies. This committee aims to assess the extent of the damage and develop strategies to restore the health of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, safeguarding their invaluable resources for future generations.