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'''This page has limited information. If you have more information on the hydrogeology of Libya, we will be happy to include it.'''  
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'''This page has limited information and needs to be updated. If you have more information on the hydrogeology of Libya, please get in touch!'''  
 
 
[[File:CC-BY-SA_logo_88x31.png | frame | This work is licensed under a [https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/ Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License]]]
 
 
 
Libya has been inhabited since ancient times and seen successive occupations, including Romans, Arabs, the Ottoman Empire, Italy and post-second world war Allied forces. Libya became independent in 1951, initially as a kingdom but following a military coup in 1969, ruled by Muammar Gaddafi until he was overthrown in a civil war in 2011. Widespread military, political and civil unrest has continued since 2011. In September 2017 the UN announced a new roadmap for political reconciliation, calling for a constitutional referendum and new general elections within a year.
 
 
 
The Libyan economy depends on oil, which was discovered in 1959. Other natural resources are natural gas and gypsum. There is a very large public sector, and the government is the largest employer in the country. Agriculture, which before oil discovery was the main source of revenue, today accounts for a very small proportion of GDP, and Libya imports large proportions of its food. In the early 1980s, Libya was one of the wealthiest countries in the world, but unrest in recent years, exacerbated by falling global petroleum prices, have had a significant impact on infrastructure and the economy.
 
 
 
Most of Libya is desert, with limited surface water resources, and it relies almost entirely on groundwater, most of which is ‘fossil’ water – recharged thousands of years ago when the region’s climate was wetter. Most agriculture relies on groundwater for irrigation, largely from the Great Man Made River. This was a major project from the 1980s: a network of pipes transporting groundwater abstracted from the Nubian Sandstone Aquifer System, in the Saharan part of southern Libya, northwards to cities and towns on the coast where most of the population lives.
 
 
 
  
  
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'''Dr Kirsty Upton''' and '''Brighid Ó Dochartaigh''', British Geological Survey, UK
 
'''Dr Kirsty Upton''' and '''Brighid Ó Dochartaigh''', British Geological Survey, UK
  
'''Dr Imogen Bellwood-Howard''', Institute of Development Studies, UK
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Please cite this page as: Upton & Ó Dochartaigh, 2016.
  
Please cite this page as: Upton, Ó Dochartaigh and Bellwood-Howard, 2018.
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Bibliographic reference: Upton, K. & Ó Dochartaigh, B.É. 2016. Africa Groundwater Atlas: Hydrogeology of Libya. British Geological Survey. Accessed [date you accessed the information]. http://earthwise.bgs.ac.uk/index.php/Hydrogeology_of_Libya
 
 
Bibliographic reference: Upton, K., Ó Dochartaigh, B.É. and Bellwood-Howard, I. 2018. Africa Groundwater Atlas: Hydrogeology of Libya. British Geological Survey. Accessed [date you accessed the information]. http://earthwise.bgs.ac.uk/index.php/Hydrogeology_of_Libya
 
  
 
==Terms and conditions==
 
==Terms and conditions==
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{| class = "wikitable"
 
{| class = "wikitable"
 
|-
 
|-
|Capital city || Tripoli
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|Estimated Population in 2013* || 6,201,521
 
|-
 
|-
|Region || Northern Africa
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|Rural Population (% of total) (2013)* || 21.8%
 
|-
 
|-
|Border countries || Egypt, Sudan, Chad, Niger, Algeria, Tunisia
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|Total Surface Area* || 1,759,540 sq km
 
|-
 
|-
|Total surface area* || 2,000,000 km<sup>2</sup>  ( 200,000,000 ha)
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|Agricultural Land (% of total area) (2012)* || 8.7%
 
|-
 
|-
|Total population (2015)* || 6,278,000
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|Capital City || Tripoli
 
|-
 
|-
|Rural population (2015)* ||1,316,000 (21%)
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|Region || Northern Africa
 
|-
 
|-
|Urban population (2015)* ||4,962,000  (79%)
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|Border Countries || Egypt, Sudan, Chad, Niger, Algeria, Tunisia
 
|-
 
|-
|UN Human Development Index (HDI) [highest = 1] (2014)*|| 0.7245
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|Annual Freshwater Withdrawal (2013)* || 4,326 Million cubic metres
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|-
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|Annual Freshwater Withdrawal for Agriculture (2013)* || 82.9%
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|-
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|Annual Freshwater Withdrawal for Domestic Use (2013)* || 14.1%
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|-
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|Annual Freshwater Withdrawal for Industry (2013)* || 3.1%
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|-
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|Rural Population with Access to Improved Water Source (2012)* || n/a
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|-
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|Urban Population with Access to Improved Water Source (2012)* || n/a
 
|}
 
|}
  
<nowiki>*</nowiki> Source: [http://www.fao.org/nr/water/aquastat/data/query/index.html?lang=en FAO Aquastat]
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<nowiki>*</nowiki> Source: World Bank
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===Climate===
 
===Climate===
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|-
 
|-
 
|
 
|
There are no permanent rivers in Libya, only ephemeral rivers or ''wadis''.
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There are no permanent rivers in Libya, only ephemeral rivers or ''wadis''. The main natural lakes are the Ubari lakes in the Ubari Sand Sea in the south, including the Gaberoun, Mandara and Mafo akes–, the protected Ouau en Namu lakes and the 23rd of July or Benghazi lake, which is actually a lagoon.  
 
 
There are several natural desert lakes, which support unique ecosystems and provide a water supply to desert nomads and migrating animals (Abufayed et al. 2015). The main lakes are the Ubari lakes in the Ubari Sand Sea in the south, including the Gaberoun, Mandara and Mafo akes–, the protected Ouau en Namu lakes and the 23rd of July or Benghazi lake, which is more properly a lagoon.  
 
  
 
The Qattara Depression in the north-west of Libya lies under the sea level and is covered with temporary lakes, salt pans and salt marshes. Other large salt pans include Sabkhat al Hayshah close to the coast near the gulf of Sidra, and Sabkhat Shunayn and Ghuzayyil in the north-east.
 
The Qattara Depression in the north-west of Libya lies under the sea level and is covered with temporary lakes, salt pans and salt marshes. Other large salt pans include Sabkhat al Hayshah close to the coast near the gulf of Sidra, and Sabkhat Shunayn and Ghuzayyil in the north-east.
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|}
 
|}
  
===Water statistics===
 
  
{| class = "wikitable"
 
| || 2000 ||2001||2012||2014||2015
 
|-
 
|Rural population with access to safe drinking water (%) || ||68.3 ||  || ||
 
|-
 
|Urban population with access to safe drinking water (%) || ||72.1 ||  || ||
 
|-
 
|Population affected by water related disease || No data || No data || No data || No data || No data
 
|-
 
|Total internal renewable water resources (cubic metres/inhabitant/year) || || ||  ||111.5||
 
|-
 
|Total exploitable water resources (Million cubic metres/year) || || ||635 ||||
 
|-
 
|Freshwater withdrawal as % of total renewable water resources || || ||822.9 || ||
 
|-
 
|Total renewable groundwater (Million cubic metres/year) ||  || || ||600 ||
 
|-
 
|Exploitable: Regular renewable groundwater (Million cubic metres/year) || || ||600|| ||
 
|-
 
|Groundwater produced internally (Million cubic metres/year) || || ||  ||600 ||
 
|-
 
|Fresh groundwater withdrawal (primary and secondary) (Million cubic metres/year) || || ||5.55 || ||
 
|-
 
|Groundwater: entering the country (total) (Million cubic metres/year) || || ||  ||0||
 
|-
 
|Groundwater: leaving the country to other countries (total) (Million cubic metres/year) || || ||700|| ||
 
|-
 
|Industrial water withdrawal (all water sources) (Million cubic metres/year) || || || 280|| ||
 
|-
 
| Municipal water withdrawal (all water sources) (Million cubic metres/year)  || || ||700 || ||
 
|-
 
|Agricultural water withdrawal (all water sources) (Million cubic metres/year) || || ||4,850 || ||
 
|-
 
|Irrigation water withdrawal (all water sources)<sup>1</sup> (Million cubic metres/year) || No data || No data || No data || No data || No data
 
|-
 
|Irrigation water requirement (all water sources)<sup>1</sup> (Million cubic metres/year) ||1.833 || ||  || ||
 
|-
 
|Area of permanent crops (ha) || || ||  ||300,000 ||
 
|-
 
|Cultivated land (arable and permanent crops) (ha) || || ||  ||2,050,000 ||
 
|-
 
|Total area of country cultivated (%) || || ||  || 1.165||
 
|-
 
|Area equipped for irrigation by groundwater (ha) ||464,000 || ||  || ||
 
|-
 
|Area equipped for irrigation by mixed surface water and groundwater (ha) || No data || No data || No data || No data || No data
 
|}
 
 
These statistics are sourced from [http://www.fao.org/nr/water/aquastat/main/index.stm FAO Aquastat]. More information on the derivation and interpretation of these statistics can be seen on the FAO Aquastat website.
 
 
Further water and related statistics can be accessed at the [http://www.fao.org/nr/water/aquastat/data/query/index.html?lang=en Aquastat Main Database].
 
 
<sup>1</sup> More information on [http://www.fao.org/nr/water/aquastat/water_use_agr/index.stm irrigation water use and requirement statistics]
 
  
 
==Geology==
 
==Geology==
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==Hydrogeology==
 
==Hydrogeology==
  
The hydrogeology map below, at 1:5 million scale, shows the type and productivity of the main aquifers at a national scale (see the [[Africa Groundwater Atlas Hydrogeology Maps | Hydrogeology map resource page]] for more details).  
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The hydrogeology map below, at 1:5 million scale, shows the type and productivity of the main aquifers at a national scale (see the [[Hydrogeology Map | Hydrogeology map resource page]] for more details).  
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More information on the hydrogeology of Libya is available in the report [http://www.bgs.ac.uk/africagroundwateratlas/fulldetails.cfm?id=AGLA060041 United Nations (1988)] (see References section, below).
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[[File:Libya_Hydrogeology.png]] [[File: Hydrogeology_Key.png | 500x195px]]
  
More information on the hydrogeology of Libya is available in the report [https://www.bgs.ac.uk/africaGroundwaterAtlas/atlas.cfc?method=ViewDetails&id=AGLA060041 United Nations (1988)] (see References section, below).
 
  
[[File:Libya_Hydrogeology.png | center | thumb| 400px | Map of hydrogeology (aquifer type and productivity) of Libya at 1:5 million scale. For more information on how the map was developed see the [[Africa Groundwater Atlas Hydrogeology Maps | Hydrogeology map]] resource page]].
 
  
[[File: Hydrogeology_Key.png | 500x195px]]
 
  
 
=== Transboundary aquifers===
 
=== Transboundary aquifers===
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==References==
 
==References==
  
References with more information on the geology and hydrogeology of Libya can be accessed through the [https://www.bgs.ac.uk/africaGroundwaterAtlas/atlas.cfc?method=listResults&title_search=&author_search=&category_search=&country_search=LY&placeboolean=AND&singlecountry=1 Africa Groundwater Literature Archive].
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References with more information on the geology and hydrogeology of Libya can be accessed through the [http://www.bgs.ac.uk/africagroundwateratlas/searchResults.cfm?title_search=&author_search=&category_search=&country_search=LY&placeboolean=AND&singlecountry=1 Africa Groundwater Literature Archive].
  
 
Abdudayem A and Scott AHS. 2014. [https://eprints.usq.edu.au/26984/1/Article%202.pdf Water infrastructure in Libya and the water situation in agriculture in the Jefara region of Libya]. African Journal of Economic and Sustainable Development, 3 (1).  
 
Abdudayem A and Scott AHS. 2014. [https://eprints.usq.edu.au/26984/1/Article%202.pdf Water infrastructure in Libya and the water situation in agriculture in the Jefara region of Libya]. African Journal of Economic and Sustainable Development, 3 (1).  
 
Abdelrhem IM, Raschid K and Ismail A. 2008. [http://www.yemenwater.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Abdelrhem-Isam-Mohamed-Rashid-Kahlim-and-Ismail-Amiruddin-2008.pdf Integrated groundwater management for Great Man-Made River Project in Libya]. Eur. J. Sci. Res, 22, 562-569.
 
 
Aqeil H, Tindall J and Moran E. 2012. [http://www.tinmore.com/pdf/WS121027_WaterSecurityLibya.pdf Water security and interconnected challenges in Libya]. Tinmore Institute Research Report WS121027.
 
  
 
Abufayed A, Madi L and Radi M. 2015. [http://web.cedare.org/wp-content/uploads/2005/05/Libya-State-of-the-Water-Reporting-Monitoring-and-Evaluation-Operational-Framework-and-Guidelines.pdf Libya State of the Water Reporting, Monitoring and Evaluation Operational Framework and Guidelines]. Report for CEDARE.  
 
Abufayed A, Madi L and Radi M. 2015. [http://web.cedare.org/wp-content/uploads/2005/05/Libya-State-of-the-Water-Reporting-Monitoring-and-Evaluation-Operational-Framework-and-Guidelines.pdf Libya State of the Water Reporting, Monitoring and Evaluation Operational Framework and Guidelines]. Report for CEDARE.  
 
Alfarrah N, Berhane G, Hweesh A and Walraevens K. 2017. [http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/gwat.12534/full Sinkholes Due to Groundwater Withdrawal in Tazerbo Wellfield, SE Libya]. Groundwater.
 
 
Dolezal RC. 2016. [http://sites.stedwards.edu/pangaea/the-nubian-sandstone-aquifer-dispute/  The Nubian Sandstone Aquifer Dispute]. Pangaea Journal.
 
 
FAO. 2009. [http://www.groundwatergovernance.org/fileadmin/user_upload/groundwatergovernance/docs/Country_studies/Libya_Synthesis_Report_Final_Groundwater_Management.pdf Groundwater Management in Libya Draft Synthesis Report].
 
IAEA. 2013. [https://www.iaea.org/newscenter/pressreleases/four-african-nations-agree-water-management-programme Four African Nations Agree to Water Management Programme]. Press release, 18 September 2013 
 
 
Russeau S. 2011. [https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2011/may/27/libya-water-hidden-weapon Libya: water emerges as hidden weapon]. Fri 27 May 2011, for IPS.
 
  
 
Sattar AMA and Gawad SA. 2014. [http://web.cedare.org/wp-content/uploads/2005/05/North-Africa-Regional-Water-Sector-Monitoring-and-Evaluation-Rapid-Assessment-Report.pdf North Africa Regional Water Sector M&E Rapid Assessment Report]. Report for CEDARE.  
 
Sattar AMA and Gawad SA. 2014. [http://web.cedare.org/wp-content/uploads/2005/05/North-Africa-Regional-Water-Sector-Monitoring-and-Evaluation-Rapid-Assessment-Report.pdf North Africa Regional Water Sector M&E Rapid Assessment Report]. Report for CEDARE.  
  
Stephan RM. 2013. [https://www.internationalwaterlaw.org/blog/2013/10/20/adoption-of-regional-strategic-action-plan-on-the-nubian-sandstone-aquifer/ Adoption of Regional Strategic Action Plan on the Nubian Sandstone Aquifer]. Post on the International Water Law Project Blog.
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United Nations. 1988. [http://www.bgs.ac.uk/africagroundwateratlas/fulldetails.cfm?id=AGLA060041 Groundwater in North and West Africa: Libya]. United Nations Department of Technical Cooperation for Development and Economic Commission for Africa.
 
 
UNEP. 2010. [https://na.unep.net/geas/getUNEPPageWithArticleIDScript.php?article_id=69 Ancient Water is Used to Irrigate a Desert—Murzuq Basin, Libya]
 
 
 
United Nations. 1988. [https://www.bgs.ac.uk/africaGroundwaterAtlas/atlas.cfc?method=ViewDetails&id=AGLA060041 Libya: Groundwater in North and West Africa]. United Nations Department of Technical Cooperation for Development and Economic Commission for Africa.
 
 
 
  
Return to the index pages:
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==Return to the index pages==
 
[[Africa Groundwater Atlas Home | Africa Groundwater Atlas]] >> [[Hydrogeology by country | Hydrogeology by country]]  >> Hydrogeology of Libya
 
[[Africa Groundwater Atlas Home | Africa Groundwater Atlas]] >> [[Hydrogeology by country | Hydrogeology by country]]  >> Hydrogeology of Libya
  

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