Syria Environment - 2021


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Environment - current issues

deforestation; overgrazing; soil erosion; desertification; depletion of water resources; water pollution from raw sewage and petroleum refining wastes; inadequate potable water

Environment - international agreements

party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Climate Change-Paris Agreement, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Dumping-London Convention, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands

signed, but not ratified: Environmental Modification

Air pollutants

particulate matter emissions: 39.43 micrograms per cubic meter (2016 est.)

carbon dioxide emissions: 28.83 megatons (2016 est.)

methane emissions: 12.93 megatons (2020 est.)

Total water withdrawal

municipal: 1.475 billion cubic meters (2017 est.)

industrial: 615.4 million cubic meters (2017 est.)

agricultural: 14.67 billion cubic meters (2017 est.)

Total renewable water resources

16.802 billion cubic meters (2017 est.)


mostly desert; hot, dry, sunny summers (June to August) and mild, rainy winters (December to February) along coast; cold weather with snow or sleet periodically in Damascus

Land use

agricultural land: 75.8% (2018 est.)

arable land: 25.4% (2018 est.)

permanent crops: 5.8% (2018 est.)

permanent pasture: 44.6% (2018 est.)

forest: 2.7% (2018 est.)

other: 21.5% (2018 est.)


urban population: 56.1% of total population (2021)

rate of urbanization: 5.38% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)

Food insecurity

exceptional shortfall in aggregate food production/supplies: due to civil conflict and a stagnant economy - a nationwide food security assessment estimates that about 12.4 million people (60% of the overall population) are now food insecure in 2021, 5.4 million more than at the end of 2019, mostly due to constrained livelihood opportunities and a rapidly worsening economy; although some international food assistance is being provided, Syrian refugees are also pressuring host communities' resources in neighboring countries (2021)

Waste and recycling

municipal solid waste generated annually: 4.5 million tons (2009 est.)

municipal solid waste recycled annually: 112,500 tons (2010 est.)

percent of municipal solid waste recycled: 2.5% (2010 est.)

NOTE: The information regarding Syria on this page is re-published from the 2021 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency and other sources. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Syria 2021 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Syria 2021 should be addressed to the CIA or the source cited on each page.

This page was last modified 16 Dec 23, Copyright © 2023 ITA all rights reserved.