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 The General Directorate of Water Resources and Rationalization



The General Directorate of Water Resources and Rationalization is responsible for managing the conventional water resources (non-renewable ground water, renewable ground water and surface water) and non-conventional (reused treated wastewater). It's also responsible for preserving and sustaining water resources, making use of it as a national wealth.


Water Studies Division.
Groundwater Resources Division.
Surface Water Resources Division.
Water Reuse Division. 
Water Rationalization Division.

Laws and Regulations:

Law of Preservation of Water Resources, Royal Decree No. M/34 dated 24 / 8 / 1400 H.
Regulation for licensing water well drilling operations (update currently in process)

Legislations and Regulations:

The Division is currently updating the procedures of internal and external systems within a comprehensive consolidated list of all its procedures which guarantee all of it citizens their statutory rights, under the executive regulations for wells drilling for different purposes which its resolutions implementation based on the following laws:
Law of Preservation of Water Resources, Royal Decree No. M/34 dated 24 / 8 / 1400 H.
The Council of Ministers Resolution No. (335) dated 9/11/ 1428H, concerning the rules and procedures for rationalizing water consumption and regulating water use in agricultural fields, in all cities, in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
The Council of Ministers Resolution No. (39) dated 16/1/ 1438H, approving the termination of local production of green fodder in farms exceeding fifty hectares located in areas of the sedimentary shelf, and depending on ground water that can provide safe drinking water.
The Council of Ministers Resolution No. (119) dated 15/4/1437H, approving the regulations on the division of agricultural lands, and containing the telegram No. (5613/1/1437) dated 27/2/1438H of HE the Minister regulating (Paragraph E) referred to in the said Council of Ministers Resolution.
This Regulation is still under procedures for the final adoption by the Minister.

Tasks and Responsibilities:

The General Directorate of Water Resources and Rationalization consists of five divisions which perform the tasks entrusted to them, as follows:

1) Water Studies Division:
The Division is responsible for establishing frame of reference and preparing requirements and specifications for conducting detailed studies on groundwater resources and feasibility studies for the establishment of water fields in the future.  In addition to that, carrying out studies on the possibility of rehabilitating aquifers by the injection of desalinated water surplus and dam water for the strategic water reserves including potable water, wastewater, as well as industrial wastewater for agricultural purposes treated by using tertiary treatment. Moreover, the division has participated in international forums and conferences on water, and it is also responsible for following up on local, regional and international committees on water issues and management, and collecting and analyzing data on water wells network to use it for the implementation of groundwater studies.

2) Groundwater Resources Division:
The Division is responsible for studying the immediate and future needs of drinking water fields and preparing the timetable for the stages of activating the utilization of these fields and managing water services requests for areas that are not covered with drinking water services, especially those that cannot be supplied with water from the fields such as villages.

Furthermore, the division also provides the following services: preparation of technical specifications for public wells used for civil, agricultural or industrial purposes, technical supervision of the stages of implementation, preparation of reports and inclusion of such data in the ministry database, and the management of wells drilling requests that are used for agricultural and industrial purposes. It is also responsible for providing the Water Licensing Division with water information and technical requirements.

3) Surface Water Resources Division:
Based on hydrological and geological information, the division is conducting preliminary studies to determine dam sites and feasibility of its establishment. It also supervises the network of climate monitoring stations and rainfall stations, issuing periodic reports, participating in the work of local and regional committees related to climate change and its impacts on water resources.

It is part of the Water Information Center of the General Directorate of Water Planning, which is currently undertaking a project to monitor rainfall by satellite in cooperation with the University of California, Irvine. 
      Near Real-Time Satellite Precipitation Monitoring System for Saudi Arabia (beta version): 

4) Water Reuse Division:
It is one of the new divisions, which also will constitute the future of the integrated management of groundwater resources and It will be responsible for the following: 
Meet development needs of water by providing treated water according to the appropriate specifications for each use.
Reduce dependence on groundwater as a source of irrigation, by increasing treated wastewater allocations to farms.
Maximize the utilization of treated water.
Prioritize water demand for non-potable water for treated water.
Activate and follow up compliance with the requirements and legislations governing the treatment and reuse of wastewater.

5) Water Rationalization Division:
This division is responsible for preparing water rationalization programs for the different uses of water (civil, agricultural and industrial) by launching national water rationalization campaigns aimed at raising public awareness on the importance of water conservation and the higher costs of water provision since the Kingdom is one of the largest arid countries which have rainfall and water scarcity. The first phase of the water conservation campaign was launched with the aim of rationalizing the use of water for civil purposes.  The Division of Water Rationalization, representing the ministry, has introduced a national water conservation program consists of a permanent water rationalization public awareness exhibition, and a sales point for water consumption rationalization tools, and a mobile exhibition to participate in national, regional and international events.

The Ministry has succeeded in reducing the amount of per capita consumption of water by distributing thousands of water consumption rationalization tools (water conservation tool bag and efficient toilet flushing system). Moreover, there are other phases aimed at rationalizing water consumption for agricultural purposes (installation of water meters on private wells) and will launch successive campaigns aimed at civil consumption to reach the global consumption rate. The Division will also participate in treating the water leakage of potable water in public and private water networks in coordination with the National Water Company.


Completed projects for drilling drinking water wells:
62 wells have been drilled during the past year at a cost of about (SR35.000.000) to secure potable water in various regions of the Kingdom. An estimated (60.0000 M3/day) of water capacity made available through these wells.

Under construction projects for drilling drinking water wells:
The Division supervises (34) contracts for drilling (200) wells to provide potable water in different areas at a cost of (SR109.058.735), and it is expected that these wells will contribute to the provision of (160.000) M3/day of drinking water.


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