L’ Agence de l’Eau du Gourma (Burkina Faso)

Finalized project

A Water Operator Partnership with l’Agence de l’Eau du Gourma to safeguard water reserves of Burkina Faso

Region Provence l'Est
Period 2014-2019
Project partners  Regional Public Water Authorities Drents Overijsselse Delta, Hunze & Aa's and Aa & Maas
Recipients L'Agence de l'Eau du Gourma
Funding  Nuffic, Young Experts Programme (YEP)


The province of Gourma is located in the Southeast of Burkina Faso, close to the border of Niger and Benin. In 2014, we initiated a Water Operator Partnership (WOP) with the regional water authority l’Agence de l’Eau du Gourma (AEG) to provide support on water governance. Gourma is facing a lack of clean drinking water, soil and groundwater contamination due to solid waste, wastewater and pesticides. Climate change is causing erosion, flooding, desertification and loss of fertile land.

Our impact

The young organisation of AEG is lacking knowledge on rainwater collection. In the 1990s, shallow barrages were built to collect rainwater during the four month wet season, but the responsibility for maintenance has never been clear. Most barrages are used for irrigation, a few larger ones are used for purification of drinking water. A large part of the drinking water comes from groundwater, but there is very little insight into the groundwater levels. Potentially, the barrages could be used to replenish the groundwater reservoirs, through infiltration.


  • Building awareness and educational programmes on good water management.
  • Advising and supporting on financing, implementation of water taxes on the principal accompanied by a communication strategy.
  • Setting up and implementing a training program in conducting water projects and measuring and analysing water quality and water quantity data.
  • Advising and supporting on geohydrology and integrated water management covering the complete water cycle: surface water, groundwater, drinking water and wastewater.
  • Advising on protection, maintenance and management of the dams and water reservoirs.
  • Setting up and implementing a monitoring program for water quality and water quantity.
  • Setting up a (geo)hydrological model of the water management area of Gourma.
  • Assisting in legislation and enforcement.

Obtained results

  • Training on Integral Water Management in Burkina Faso.
  • Indication of required water balance of the Tandjari barrage Fada N’Ghourma.
  • Insight into sedimentation and erosion levels of the Tandjari barrage Fada N’Ghourma.
  • Multiannual Monitoring Plan.
  • Cooperation with drinking water company ONEA Fada N’Ghourma.