Environmental Reform in Egypt: The Past Mistakes, Present Situation and Future Perspectives

Sherifa Fouad Sherif


Government institutions in Egypt are slowly trying to look at ways to correct mistakes of the past. Egypt is currently facing serious environmental challenges; some scholars go far as saying it is an environmental crisis. The causes of these problems are complex, one intervening factor was prevalent, the institutional choices the Egyptian policy makers have made through the course of industrialization since the 1960's, 70's and 80's. These choices tended to downplay or ignore environmental consequences in favor of attaining the most rapid economic growth possible. Flawed institutional practices were the main contributor to the environmental problems facing the country today. This paper's main focus is to look into the original causes of the environmental problems as well as present situation. Looking into Egypt after the uprisings and how the government is on the road towards environmental reform, beginning with environmental protection taking up several articles in the newly amended constitution of 2014. With a proactive constitution, policy makers in Egypt have started to take certain measures to reform, ensuring a sustainable future that allows for economic development along side environmental protection.

Statement of the Problem: Policy makers in Egypt must accept that the country is facing severe environmental problems. The Egyptian Government is taking appropriate measures to ensure the countries future economic and ecological survival.

Questions of the Study:

1. What are the environmental problems facing Egypt today?

2. What ignited the current environmental problems?

3. Is the government aware of the severity of the environmental problems facing Egypt?

3. What measures can the current government take to begin environmental reform?

4. Is focusing on economic growth and development far more important than the environmental damage                that will occur in the process?

Methodology: The methodology of this paper is an exploratory case study, relying on the qualitative approach to research. Methods of collection of data were mainly using secondary data, interviews,                analyzing existing data such as archival documents.

Key Words: Environmental problems, Egypt, Air pollution. Water pollution, Soil degradation, Overpopulation, Industrialization, Institutional restructuring

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ISSN (Paper)2224-3216 ISSN (Online)2225-0948

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