Shutterstock 583586605 Mopti Mali Africa September 2 2011 Mali fisherman in his boat Teo Tarras

The Nexus Regional Dialogue in the Niger Basin

Working to effectively integrate resource management of the Basin

Project Details

  • EU
  • BMZ
  • Logo NBA
  • Logo GIZ 730x730
  • Implementing organisation:

    Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH

  • Collaborating partners:

    Niger Basin Authority (NBA)

  • Implementation period:

    July 2020 – June 2023

  • Beneficiary countries:

    Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Ivory Coast, Guinea, Mali, Niger, and Nigeria

  • Funding by:

    European Union (EU), German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)

Key Publications

Factsheet NRD Niger

Factsheet: The Nexus Regional Dialogue in the Niger Basin

NRD Niger factsheet FR

Fiche d´ information : Dialogue Régional Nexus dans le bassin du Niger

Country profile nb

Nexus Country Profiles for the Niger Basin

file

Download (PDF, 1.939 MB)

The country profiles are developed in the frame of the Nexus Dialogue Programme, jointly funded by the European Union and the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), Germany.

Burkina faso

Nexus Country Profiles for the Niger Basin - Burkina Faso

file

Download (PDF, 999.749 KB)

The country profiles are developed in the frame of the Nexus Dialogue Programme, jointly funded by the European Union and the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), Germany. This publication is in French.

Cameroon

Nexus Country Profiles for the Niger Basin - Cameroon

file

Download (PDF, 969.456 KB)

The country profiles are developed in the frame of the Nexus Dialogue Programme, jointly funded by the European Union and the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), Germany. This publication is in French.

Mali

Nexus Country Profiles for the Niger Basin - Mali

file

Download (PDF, 962.929 KB)

The country profiles are developed in the frame of the Nexus Dialogue Programme, jointly funded by the European Union and the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), Germany.

Nigeria

Nexus Country Profiles for the Niger Basin - Nigeria

file

Download (PDF, 980.493 KB)

The country profiles are developed in the frame of the Nexus Dialogue Programme, jointly funded by the European Union and the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), Germany. This publication is in French.

Regional Context

Water infrastructure shapes resource and ecosystem security in the Niger Basin

As the major river in West Africa, the basin of the Niger River and its ecosystems provide the foundation for the everyday activities and livelihoods of around 160 million people. The river provides drinking water, hydropower generation, irrigated agriculture, cattle breeding, fishing and transportation – making it the élan vital of the nine countries of the Niger Basin: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Ivory Coast, Guinea, Mali, Niger and Nigeria. Climate change scenarios for the basin are uncertain. However, it is clear that rainfall variability will increase leading on the one hand to longer dry periods that will hamper water-depended activities, particularly agriculture. On the other hand, rainfall intensity and extreme flooding events are likely to increase in the summer. Variations in the river flow thus have a huge impact on the livelihoods of those who depend on it, and equitable managing its water across sectors will only become more crucial as climate change intensifies. Agricultural accounts for 85% of freshwater withdrawals in the region, which is increasingly bringing it into competition with hydropower projects, while rapid population growth and urbanisation heighten the demand for electricity, clean drinking water and food. The Basin also hosts 7 of the 20 poorest countries in the world and is eager to ramp up infrastructure projects to reduce poverty and bolster economic development. Despite progress in mainstreaming the WEF Nexus approach in long-term regional planning, zones of political instability and environmental vulnerabilities make balanced resource planning among the water, food and energy sectors an ever-present challenge for the Niger Basin.

Farmers crops Niger ID 1338515699 Madalin Olariu
Niger @Madalin Olariu

Nexus Stories

Check out these Nexus successes across our regions - presented in a visual storytelling format, with personal stories and expert insights

Niger basin

The Niger Basin encompasses nine West African countries in the catchment area of the Niger River, the third longest river in Africa. The waters of the Niger River and its tributaries originate from the high rainfall of the eastern Guinea Highlands, crossing country lines and forming a boomerang shape as the Niger ‘bends’ in Mali before flowing south into the sea at the Gulf of Guinea in Nigeria. The landscape and climate is diverse, containing mountains, moist forests, savannahs and wetlands and features large ranges in rainfall depending on the season and climatic area.

Why are WEF Nexus Solutions Needed?

  • 70%

    Over 70% of the population live in areas where food security comes from unreliable water sources vulnerable to climate change

  • 1 in 3

    Only one in three inhabitants has access to electricity

  • 75%

    75% of the population do not have improved sanitation facilities

  • 85%

    Over 85% of freshwater withdrawals are used for agriculture

  • By 2030

    The population in the region is expected to increase almost threefold between 1990 and 2030 to reach 516 million people

  • Biomass

    The major source of energy in the Niger Basin is biomass (charcoal, wood)

  • Water
  • Food

Water and Agriculture

The agriculture sector, which provides employment for 80% of the basin’s population, is watered by seasonal rains and river flows which fluctuate across the region. Both rainfall and the variable water levels of the 4,200 km long Niger River are vulnerable to climatic changes, threatening communities that depend on its water for irrigation, fishing or drinking water. Livelihoods are therefore deeply intertwined with water, agriculture and the environment, with 70% of the Niger Basin’s inhabitants depending on food production from unreliable water sources vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. Strengthening cooperative water governance play a significant role in achieving the basin’s development goals, climate resilience and food security. 

  • Water
  • NRD icon turbine shaped

Water and Energy

Many basin members wish to tackle poverty and growing water, energy and food demands through multi-purpose water infrastructure, including current and proposed construction of large dams such as the Fomi (Guinea), Touassa (Mali), and Kandadji (Niger) dams. There is huge potential for hydropower in the region but as well awareness that these projects could have damaging environmental and social impacts if they are not implemented appropriately. Large-scale infrastructure projects are likely to continue as a main feature of regional plans to expand electricity access, provide water storage and irrigation and boost economic development. Integrated and transboundary water management will thus be a key part of improving both water and energy security – as well as quality of life – throughout the Niger Basin.

  • NRD icon turbine shaped
  • Food

Energy and Agriculture

The Niger Basin is not currently exploiting its full energy potential, which is more relevant than ever in light of rapidly growing energy demands from population growth, urbanization and industrialization. Access to modern energy services is particularly low, especially in rural households that predominantly depend on burning biomass and are supported by small scale agricultural production. Irrigation projects may need energy, for instance for pumping water – but can be threatened by diverted water flows from dam construction if the competing needs of energy and food are not considered. Balanced planning in the basin must therefore consider all potential impacts, including conflicts between the agricultural and the energy sector, when evaluating current and proposed infrastructure.

Achievements

A strong foundation for future development

When this project began in 2016, WEF Nexus was a new approach and needed to be recognised and endorsed by regional institutions. Awareness and a supportive enabling environment are necessary to develop and implement concrete development projects, which the Niger Basin more than succeeded in. 

In its first phase, the Niger Basin Nexus Dialogue Project achieved this through the following outcomes:

  • Workshops

    Five regional and national appropriation and consultation workshops on Nexus implementations

  • Application Strategies

    Nexus application strategies developed for major multi-purpose dams: Fomi and Kandadji

  • 350 Projects

    Nexus mainstreatming into operational and investment planning of the Niger Basin - 350 projects

  • Ministerial Council

    The NBA Ministerial Council and Regional Piloting Committees officially validated the work done

  • Country Profiles

    Nexus country profiles for the 9 basin countries and a Nexus basin-wide profile have been published

  • Peace & Security

    Adding a Peace & Security dimension to Nexus: new financing approved for peace building in the basin through Nexus-based natural resource management

Key Activities 

The Nexus approach kicks into gear

Building on the successes of the first phase, Phase II of the Niger Basin Nexus Dialogue Project will focus on the practical application of the Nexus approach. 

The main objectives include:

  • Mainstreaming of the Nexus through policy and investment dialogue events.
  • Tailored trainings at regional and national level (e.g. Mali, Niger, Guinea) on Nexus tools, applications and bottom-up policy implications and recommendations.
  • Tangible benefits of Nexus approach through support and documentation of demonstration projects (e.g. applying cost-benefit analysis).
  • Preparation of large/medium scale Nexus investment projects.
Contact

Cecilia Vey

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