Funded by a World Bank-managed multi-donor Trust Fund, the Nile Basin Initiative (NBI) was founded with the goal of developing the Nile River Basin in a cooperative manner in order to ensure its resources are developed and shared and that its substantial socio-economic benefits promote regional peace and security. The NBI wanted to establish a Nile Basin Decision Support System (NB-DSS) to support water resources planning and investment decisions in the Nile Basin, especially those with cross-border or basin level ramifications. The NB-DSS will assist in the evaluation of alternative development paths and the identification of joint investment projects at sub-regional and regional level.
The project commenced in 2011, when the NBI awarded a USD 850 000 contract to Aurecon (in association with Solaris Engineering from Turkey and Beuster Clarke and Associates, Conningarth Economists and NEPID from South Africa) for the pilot application of the Nile Basin DSS.
Key members of Aurecon’s team have extensive experience related to operational management, integrated water resource management and environmental flow assessments in shared river systems in Africa, including Limpopo, the Incomati-Maputo, Orange-Senqu, Okavango and Zambezi River Basins. For this project, Aurecon’s Cape Town Office led a multidisciplinary team of experts from South Africa and Europe to provide the necessary experience, skills and expertise to successfully complete the project. Aurecon was intricately involved with all aspects of the project including hydrological and system analyses, sophisticated scenario analysis, project management and capacity building. The project involved extensive interaction with all of the Nile riparian countries, including Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda, as well as with numerous international firms involved with parallel NBI studies.
Aurecon has successfully delivered data processing and modelling services for the Nile Basin DSS, which includes a Nile Basin knowledge repository, a communication and information management system, a regional river basin planning model, a suite of analytic tools, and the development of core national capabilities for the Nile riparian countries.
The NB-DSS adds immense value in helping to evaluate alternative development paths and identify joint investment projects at sub-regional and regional levels. The project was successfully completed in January 2013.