Limpopo Basin profile
Statistics and background information
Main issues in the Limpopo
A short and intense rainy season, with highly unreliable rainfall leads to frequent droughts. Crop production is not secure.
On major reaches of the Limpopo and many of its tributaries, the flow of water in the river in dry years can occur for 40 days or less.
When the rivers do flow, river water can contain up to 30% sand and silt. Large areas of land are seriously degraded. Other issues include:
|Limpopo Basin Profile|
|Statistics & background|
|Main issues in the Limpopo|
|Reasons for selection for the CPWF|
|Limpopo Basin profile report|
|Current CPWF Limpopo projects|
and information (not yet active)
Over utilisation of water resources and pollution arising from high-density urban settlements, mining and other industrial development are seen to have an impact on the social, economic, political and natural environments downstream.
It is necessary to study and quantify these effects.
Ongoing interventions (projects and programmes)
Successful development in areas with poor soils and limited water resources and failed initiatives on prime fertile lands could provide valuable guidelines.
for selection for the
The entire catchment area is arid or semi-desert. Most rivers are able to provide water only for short periods of time each year.
Pollution of the available water in some catchments and competition for water in others create significant stress on the available resources.
Poverty is widespread and people are extremely vulnerable to the effects of drought or crop failure.
Each river in the basin has communities with an average annual per capita income of less than US$200.
Starvation and malnutrition are common occurrences. About one million people in the basin currently rely on food aid.
NARES working in this basin actively seek funding to expand their research activities. Most of the ongoing work shares common aims and objectives with the CP.
All parties are willing and able to cooperate in a joint coordinated venture.
Priority will be given to areas where the greatest number of people live in abject poverty. A development history exists for the whole basin that will enable the identification of interventions, which are likely to be successful.
Extensive work is currently being done in the Olifants river basin and other areas in the north-eastern districts of South Africa. IWMI is already involved in some of these projects.
Limpopo Basin profile report1. Download the full report on the Limpopo Basin profile (PDF format 7,72Mbs). 2. Or download portions of the report:
3. Download the Challenge Program for Water and Food (CPWF) annual report 2004 (PDF format - 1,175Mb). See pages 39-46 for references to the Limpopo.
|Contact us by telephone: +27 (0)12 842-4027|E -mail the webmaster|E-mail the Limpopo Basin coordinator|