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Knowledge exchange for resource management and international trust (KERMIT) - Aleppo case-study example

Conference paper
Authors Rodney Stevens
Mohamed Alkridi
Michael Kouro
Published in 17th International Multidisciplinary Scientific Geoconference SGEM 2017. Albena, Bulgaria, 29 June - 5 July 2017.
ISBN 978-619-7408-04-1
ISSN 1314-2704
Publisher International Multidiciplinary Scientific Geoconference SGEM
Place of publication Sofia, Bulgaria
Publication year 2017
Published at Department of Earth Sciences
Language en
Keywords resource management, water pollution, human capacity building, Aleppo, Syria
Subject categories Geology, Environmental chemistry, Environmental Sciences, Geosciences, Multidisciplinary, Settlement studies


The KERMIT project deals with research and capacity-building targeted at two, related groups with academic backgrounds: 1) refugees in Europe and 2) local populations in the stressed regions from which people are fleeing. Although the long-term focus is aimed at raising the competence and capacity for sustainable resource management in stressed regions, the refugees with academic backgrounds involve both new challenges and opportunities with related objectives. These refugees need complementary study to adapt their educational background to European conditions, and at the same time they can provide valuable expertise and knowledge of specific regions and general conditions where resource conflicts and management have increased migration. Utilizing the connections to the local academic community and the existing infrastructure for research, the workshop will explore the dual and complementary goals to increase human capacity, thereby strengthening the hope for positive, short-term and long-term developments for both groups. Cooperative projects and educational activities with partner institutes in stressed regions are the distinctive profile for the KERMIT project. These activities build upon our international networks and the multidisciplinary research from the cooperative projects, utilizing earlier results and emphasizing the exchange activities for knowledge transfer in all directions. One example is the on-going case study of the Aleppo water treatment plant. The Queiq River receives sewage, industrial wastes and surface runoff from a large part of SW Aleppo. The treatment plant has the important function of improving the quality of river water so that this valuable resource can be utilized for irrigation further downstream and exported by pipelines to other agricultural areas. However, the plant has not operated during the last 4 years due to the war and disrupted electricity. The case study considers the increased pollution loading along the river due to continued irrigation with untreated water. Pollution sources, transport pathways, and recipients are modeled using system structural analysis and relative risk ranking methods.

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