د/ أحمد عبد الوهاب برانيه

أستاذ إقتصاد وتنمية الموارد السمكية

REPORT

On Lake Maryut

 

By

 

Dr. Ahmed Barrania

ADVISER, Union of Fishermen cooperatives

 

 Physical Features and discharges

 

Lake Maryut composed of five main basins separated by sand banks, with an approximate total area of 62 km2, Lake Maryut is the smallest of the Northern lakes. It is also considered to be the most polluted. Situated approximately 20 meters away from the

Mediterranean Sea, it does not have a direct discharge point out to sea to aid in its

Purification. The depth of the water in Lake Maryut ranges between 3-5 meters. Its

Perimeter is 43 km, has a maximum length of about 13 km and its present area is

About 62 km2 which is considerably smaller than its former area .Large areas of the lake have been drained and reclaimed for Agriculture, at present the lake is less than 25% of its former size. The pre-reclamation Size was estimated at 248 km2.

 

The Nubariyah Canal and Omum agricultural drain cut across the lake. Some of the

Lake’s basins receive discharges from the Omum drain or the Nubariyah Canal. The

Only discharge point from the lake is through the Mex pumping station, which

Regulates the water level in the lake (2.2-2.4 meters above sea level). The Omum

Drain and other agricultural drains are the major sources of water for the lake,

Delivering in excess of 12 million cubic meters of water per day polluted with

Agricultural runoff, untreated or partially treated municipal wastewater and industrial

Effluents. Furthermore, the effluents from a petroleum refinery and a number of other

Industries directly discharge their effluents into the lake. The hydrological discharges

To the lake may be divided as follows:

• Agricultural drainage water from Omum drain (60%)

• Agricultural drainage water from Nubariyah Canal (22%)

• Untreated industrial effluents and partially treated municipal sewage (13%)

 

 

Due to the fact that Alexandria Governorate has about 40 % share of all industrial

Production in Egypt, the Lake's area has serious pollution problems. The City of

Alexandria is served by sewer and rainwater network and two waste water treatments

Plants of primary treatment type. The total capacity is 1 320 000 m3/day, which is not

Sufficient to treat the total generated wastewater. Furthermore, many of the illegal

Constructions and new unplanned communities lack waste water networks. Industries

Discharge their effluents after primary treatment into the Lake Maryut or the sea

where they are mixed with domestic sewage effluents.

 

One of the significant pressures on the aquatic environment is due to municipal and

Industrial wastewater. Two thirds of the city waste water is released into Lake Maryut and subsequently pumped into Mex Bay, west of the Alexandria City. Together with agricultural runoff drained from the north-west part of the delta. Only half of this volume of waste water undergoes primary treatment before being dumped into Lake Maryut. As a result of the large amount of discharges, including effluents from several industries, an anaerobic condition with odours prevails in Lake Maryut.

 

 

 

Fisheries Quantity and Quality:

 

In Lake Maryut the fish catch has declined significantly in 30 years, from

Approximately 11 000 tones in 1976 to 5211 tones in 2006. It has also been suggested by some sources that the quality of fish in the Lake is affected due to accumulated pollution in the Lake.

Significant economic loss, when taking into account that average price of fish in the Lake's Area amounts to 15 LE/kg. This would give a loss of economic value of the fish catch as (11000-5211)*15 LE = 86.835 LE million.

 

 

Water Birds

 

Considering the geographical position and the habitat types, Lake Maryut is most

likely of some importance for water birds, especially herons, ducks, waders, gulls and

Terns The importance of Lake Maryut for birds has diminished greatly over the last two or three decades, due to habitat loss, ecological changes and increased disturbance and hunting pressure.

 

 

Fishermen

 

The number of fishermen in the Lake Maryut community is close to 7000, with family

Size at an average of 4.6 people In addition there is a further10, 000 workers working in fishing-related jobs such as ship-building and fish trading. If their families are also included, this would give a total of approximately 78,200 people who depend on the fishing industry of Lake Maryut. However, the number of fishermen operating in the Lake had been decreased in 2006. About 1000 persons had left fishing operations without any other work opportunities. It is noted that "Saving the Northern Delta lakes is a critical investment in the country’s future.

 

 

Activities of the Union to conserve the Lake

 

 The activities of the Union are aimed to promote sounder and more sustainable development of integrated management of Lake Maryut Zone, and the adoption of a sound participatory integrated development action plan for this zone encompassing environment protection, economic development and the needs and interests of all stakeholders.

.

The main activities include the participatory development of an integrated action plan for the Lake zone involving all stakeholders; the design and institutionalization of Lake Maryut Management and Monitoring units at Alexandria Governorate and the regional bureau of Egyptian Environmental Affairs Authority( EEAA) and developing the necessary methodological, technical and financial instruments for implementation; and capacity building activities and public awareness programmes for local and provincial authorities and stakeholders.

 

 

The Union in cooperation with General authority of Fish Resources Development and other related local and national organizations spend serious efforts to prevent wastewater from being discharged to Lake Maryut, improving therefore its water quality and enhancing sustainable development around the lake. However, it seems that the problem is too complicated.

 

المصدر: Dr. Ahmed Barrania ADVISER, Union of Fishermen cooperatives
drBarrania

د/ أحمد برانية أستاذ اقتصاد وتنمية المواردالسمكية معهد التخطيط القومى

ساحة النقاش

د/ أحمد عبد الوهاب برانية

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