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Peru is part of:
Latin America and Caribbean · South America ·
Water Basins of Peru:
Amazon · Lake Titicaca-Poopo · Tumbes-Poyango · Zarumilla ·
Facts & Figures edit
Capital Lima
Neighbouring Countries Chile, Brazil, Ecuador, Bolivia, Colombia
Total Area 1,285,220 km2
  - Water 5,220 km2 (0.41%) / 41 m2/ha
  - Land 1,280,000 km2
Coastline 2,414 km
Population 27,968,240 (22 inhab./km2)
HDIA 0.788 (2007)
Gini CoefficientA 52 (1995)
Nominal GDPB $131,400 million
GDP (PPP) Per CapitaB $3,400
Land UseC
  - Cultivated Land 33,500 km2 (3.35%)
     - Arable 28,800 km2 (2.88%)
     - Permanent Crops 4,700 km2 (0.47%)
     - Irrigated 12,000 km2
  - Non cultivated 249 km2 (96.65%)
Average Annual RainfallD 1738 mm
Renewable Water ResourcesE 1,913 km3
Water WithdrawalsF 20.13 km3/yr
  - For Agricultural Use 82%
  - For Domestic Use 8%
  - For Industrial Use 10%
  - Per Capita 376 m3
Population with safe access to
  - Improved Water Source 83%
     - Urban population 89%
     - Rural population 65%
  - Improved Sanitation 63%
     - Urban population 74%
     - Rural population 32%
References & Remarks
A UNDP Human Development Report
B CIA World Factbook and Wikipedia
C CIA World Factbook Country Profiles
D Aquastat - FAO's Information System on Water and Agriculture
E CIA World Factbook
F Earthtrends

> Articles | Projects & Case studies | Publications & Web resources | Who is who | Maps
> Sector Assessment | Sector Coordination | Donor Profile

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Country Profile: Climate, Geography, Socio-Economic Context

Country Profile: Water Bodies and Resources

Peru has the highest per capita availability of renewable freshwater in Latin America. In 2006, the per capita availability was 68,321 cubic meters. The Andes divide Peru into three natural drainage basins: the Pacific Basin (279,000 square kilometers), the Atlantic Basin (959,000 square kilometers), and the Lake Titicaca Basin (47,000 square kilometers). The Pacific Basin has 53 rivers, the Atlantic Basin has 44 rivers, and the Lake Titicaca Basin has nine rivers.

Despite its substantial quantity of freshwater, Peru is South America's most water-stressed country. The country’s water resources are characterized by geographical and temporal variability, inefficient irrigation, and declining water quality. The coastal area has only 2900 cubic meters of water per person per year, but supports 59% of the population and generates the bulk of Peru’s GDP. In contrast, the tropical rain forest area has 80% of the country’s water resources (643,000 cubic meters per person per year) and supports 10% of the population. Chronic water shortages occur in dry seasons, and there are frequent floods and droughts.

As of 2006, 87% of Peru’s urban population had access to improved water resources, in comparison to 62% of the country’s rural population. Peru’s water quality is deteriorating, primarily due to the release of untreated effluents from mining, industry, municipalities, and agriculture. Of the 53 rivers in the coastal area, 16 are partly polluted by lead, manganese and iron, which threaten irrigation and potable water supplies.

Country Profile: Legal and Institutional Environment

Legal Framework

According to the Constitution, the state holds sovereign rights to all renewable and nonrenewable natural resources in Peru, including water. Organic laws define the terms for their use and concession to private parties.

After years of consideration, the General Water Law of 1969 was replaced by the Water Resources Law No. 29338, which passed March 31, 2009. Under the Constitution, the state owns all renewable and nonrenewable natural resources. The Water Resources Law, 2009, provides that water for primary uses (direct consumption, food preparation, personal hygiene, and religious and cultural rituals) is available at no charge and does not require administrative approval. Productive uses of water, such as for agricultural and industry, are subject to regulation.

The government is also debating a National Water Resources Strategy. Together, the law and draft policy integrate Peru’s water sector, decentralize management of water resources to the river basin level, provide for stakeholder participation in water resource management, and recognize water as an economic and social good.

Institutional Framework

The National Water Authority (under the Ministry of Agriculture) was created in 2006 and is responsible for the design and implementation of water policies, including water quality and irrigation use. In accordance with the Water Resources Law, 2009, the National Water Authority will establish 14 River Basin Authorities and multiple Local Water Authorities within each River Basin Authority. Other Ministries with responsibility for water resource management are: the Ministry of Agriculture (irrigation); the Ministry of Housing and Sanitation (domestic water use); the Council of Ministries (environmental policy); the Ministry of Energy and Mining (hydropower and mining); and the Ministry of the Environment (hydro-meteorological information).

Customary water management practices are often determined by the number of communities using the resource. Under one type of system, a single community shares a canal network and its water resources. Under a second system, different villages share one or more water sources, and the canal network encompasses more than one settlement. Communities will often employ an alternating water-use arrangement in which communities take turns using a given water source rather than dividing the flow.

Government Reform and Interventions

With support of the World Bank and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), the Government of Peru undertook a National Water Resources Management Modernization Project that overhauled management of its water resources. The reforms included revisions to the legal framework, institutional structure, governance, and revenue that supported a decentralized, integrated, participatory approach to water resource management. The project included specific attention to strengthening management of water resources at the river basin level.

In 2007, the Government of Peru initiated a program known as Water for Everyone. The program was designed to increase the efficiency, equity, and sustainability of water use by supporting measures designed to pave the way for the necessary structural, institutional, legal and policy reforms. The program was supported by a US $200 million loan from the IDB and the Japan International Cooperation Agency.

Country Profile: Water Sector Coordination

See Sector coordination sub-page for detailed description

Country Profile: Trends in Water Use, Management and Sanitation

Country Profile: Challenges and Opportunities

Donor Interventions

The World Bank is supporting Peru with a US $330 million loan for an Environmental Development Policy Loan Program (ENVDPL). The 3-year (2009–2013) program will support government efforts to strengthen environmental governance and institutions in Peru and mainstream environmental sustainability in the development agenda of key sectors, including water, sanitation, and flood protection.

USAID is helping small farmers in Ayacucho and other Peruvian Andean regions to manage water resources through: building irrigation systems, providing assistance to diversify crops, increasing access to markets, and strengthening community organizations that represent farmers. As a result of USAID’s projects in the region, farmers have boosted production of crops such as potato, maize, barley, and beans and have started exporting avocados, chili peppers, snow peas, and onions.

Since 2002, GTZ has been funding a drinking water and sanitation program, PROAGUA, which runs through 2013. The program supports the Peruvian government in setting up a National Water and Sanitation Capacity-building System with a view to personal and institutional capacity-building. PROAGUA also provides technical support to companies on modernizing technical and commercial operational processes, corporate management and public relations.

In addition to its environmental focus on the water sector, the World Bank funds the National Rural Water Supply and Sanitation project, which runs through 2010. The objective of the project is to encourage the sustainable use of a new and rehabilitated water supply and sanitation facilities in rural areas and small towns while emphasizing improvement in hygienic practices and training in operation and maintenance of water systems.


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Projects and Case Studies

Projects in or about Peru

(this is a list of the 15 most recently updated entries. To see all projects click here)

  1. Towards integrated management of the Humboldt Current Large Marine Ecosystem ‎(2,934 views) . . WikiBot
  2. Integrated and adaptive management of environmental resources and climatic risks in High Andean micro-watersheds, Peru ‎(1,980 views) . . WikiBot

Case studies in or about Peru

(by popularity)

  1. Water Conflict and Cooperation/Lake Titicaca Basin ‎(28,030 views) . . Adriana.miljkovic
  2. Co-operation on the Lake Titicaca ‎(7,910 views) . . Katy.norman
  3. Innovative water management solutions in the Lake Titicaca-Poopo Basin ‎(7,764 views) . . WikiBot

See the complete list of WaterWiki documented projects in Peru


5 most recently updated publications on Peru
  1. Scaling Up Handwashing Behaviour: Findings from the Impact Evaluation Baseline Survey in Peru ‎(1,467 views) . . Katy.norman
  2. Peru SANBASUR Rural Sanitation Financing Mechanisms ‎(2,043 views) . . WikiBot
  3. Water Conflict and Cooperation/Lake Titicaca Basin ‎(28,030 views) . . Adriana.miljkovic
  4. Co-operation on the Lake Titicaca ‎(7,910 views) . . Katy.norman

5 most popular publications on Peru
  1. Water Conflict and Cooperation/Lake Titicaca Basin ‎(28,030 views) . . Adriana.miljkovic
  2. Co-operation on the Lake Titicaca ‎(7,910 views) . . Katy.norman
  3. Peru SANBASUR Rural Sanitation Financing Mechanisms ‎(2,043 views) . . WikiBot
  4. Scaling Up Handwashing Behaviour: Findings from the Impact Evaluation Baseline Survey in Peru ‎(1,467 views) . . Katy.norman

See the complete list of WaterWiki documented publications on Peru

Who is Who

People working in Peru

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See the complete list of Waterwiki users working in Peru

Organizations working in Peru
  1. Amazon Cooperation Treaty Organization ‎(2,287 views) . . WikiBot

See the complete list of WaterWiki documented organizations in Peru


See also

External Resources

"Water Supply and Sanitation in Peru" on Wikipedia

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