Water balance concerns the difference (positive, negative, nil) between the demand for water (water requirements) and the available quantity of water. In periods of drought, the demand for water is greater than the available quantities of water.
Unfortunately, there are frequent and extended periods of hydrological droughts in Cyprus, during which the available quantities of water are unusually low. As it is known, hydrological drought is the outcome of meteorological drought in other words rainfall which is significantly lower than its average mean.
A rational and sustainable management of water resources inter-annually is necessary so that Cyprus may be in a position to effectively address water shortages during drought periods as painlessly as possible. It is an obligation of all citizens to protect and save water which is such an important natural resource of life. Unfortunately, the practice of over-abstractions of ground water due to illegal and uncontrolled abstractions continues and catastrophically results in the permanent and irreversible exhaustion of underground aquifers and in case of coastal aquifers, their non-irreversible salinisation.
Calculation of the Annual Water Balance for the free areas of Cyprus
Reassessment of water resource and water demand in Cyprus (WDD &FAO-2002)
Available quantity of water from conventional sources
Enrichment of the water balance from unconventional sources
Total available quantity of water (MCM)
[from rainfall) + (from rainfall) + desalinized + recycled
[= Available quantity of water- water demand]
Quantity of water given for drinking (MCM)
Volume of rain
Available quantity of water from rainfall (MCM)
[Note: Around 90% of rainfall is lost due to evapotranspiration and around 0.02% from run off to the sea]
Water balance (MCM) [= available quantity of water from rainfall- Water Demand]
Quantity of desalinized water (MCM)
Quantity of recycled water
In 2000, the Hydrology Service of the Water Development Department in collaboration with the World Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations prepared a study on the reassessment of available water and water demand in Cyprus so as to overview the options for water management and the review of water policy.
The study was concluded in 2002 and it was the basis for the implementation of the European Framework Directive on Water 2000/60/EC in Cyprus as well as the corresponding harmonizing Cypriot legislation (The Protection and Management of Water Law) which came in force in 2004.
Water balance for the free areas of Cyprus 1971 - 2000
Reports of the study “Reassessment of the water resource and water demand in Cyprus 2002”
Posted in Greek.pdf