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Project goal

The complex water problem exerts negative influence on the economic development of the Guanting basin that more and more must serve as a support for the metropolis of Beijing. Moreover, not only the economic development is threatened by the insufficient amount and quality of water. The competition between and within the groups of water users potentially will lead to socio-economical tension and is a source for political instability. Global change on its climatic and socioeconomic dimension can significantly modulate water conflicts.

According to Zhang (2005) “The competition of water resources between different areas has been increasingly acute for the water scarcity regions. In order to bring the maximum benefit of the limited water resources, it is indispensable to have a rational water allocation.”
Thus, the general goal of the project is to develop a River Basin Management Plan (RBMP)
that aims at establishing sustainable water and land use management in the region and combines a comprehensive characterization of the current state, gap analysis, identification of pressures and impacts and a programme of measures for achieving sufficient water availability and quality in the catchment area.

Part of the RBMP is to draft detailed management options all the way up to preparing the
installation of technical solutions. The focus is on safeguarding sustainable development in
the catchment area with advanced technologies in water management, waste water treatment, and land use that are tailored to the region. The integrated, sustainable water resource management to be implemented can and should be also exemplary for other catchment areas in northern and North-Western China as well as for areas with similar conditions elsewhere.
In developing a sustainable RBMP for the Guanting watershed two aspects have to be especially taken into the account: uncertainties in future climate and socio-economic development and complex administrative structures as well as conflicting interests in the large watershed and downstream up to Beijing.

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