World Experiences of Inter-basin Water Transfer Projects and the Necessity of Developing Decision Making Criteria in Iran


1 Department of Civil Engineering, Qazvin Branch, Islamic Azad University, Qazvin, Iran

2 Department of Art and Architecture, West Tehran branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran


When categorizing water management alternatives, to meet water needs, water transfer is seen as an option that tends to supply more water. Most developing countries where limited water resources are available with high spatiotemporal dispersion, favor this option. The numbers of such projects that have been proposed, implemented, and operated in recent years evidence the desirability of this alternative. World experiences of inter-basin water transfer however prove that having holistic, systemic view, along with taking into account the principles of sustainable development as well as lifetime cost-income balance are required for such projects to be implemented. This paper intends to put emphasis on the fact that when water transfer projects are being examined, the principle of transparency and public acceptance should be recognized. In doing so, the world experiences and criteria are demonstrated and Beheshtabad project is briefly described. Moreover, it argues that it is not logical to regard the long term average yield as a basis for estimating the water availability at the source basin. The benefits of the project should be fairly distributed between source and destination basins and it is required to thoroughly investigate the other alternatives along with water transfer option.