Prof. Eckstein publishes new book, "The International Law of Transboundary Groundwater Resources"

September 19, 2017

IGWL Book CoverPhoto courtesy Routledge

International water law thought leader Gabriel Eckstein has published a new book, “The International Law of Transboundary Groundwater Resources,” forthcoming this week from Routledge, an imprint of the Taylor & Francis Group.

Eckstein is Professor of Law and Director of the Program for Natural Resources Systems at Texas A&M University School of Law.

He is the immediate past chair of the International Scientific Committee for the XVIth World Water Congress, and a current member of the Executive Council of the International Association for Water Law.

Eckstein said the book “is a long overdue capstone of more than two decades of research” and builds on more than a dozen articles and book chapters in which he explored the management and governance of groundwater resources from a transboundary perspective.

“Although we are extremely dependent on groundwater worldwide, the resource has always been treated like the neglected stepchild of water law, especially in the international arena,” Eckstein said. “This was my way of trying to elevate the visibility of groundwater within the law and governance communities.”

Drawing upon his considerable experience and scholarship in matters related to international and transboundary water law as well as international environmental law, Eckstein’s book provides a comprehensive review of the state of international law as it applies to transboundary groundwater resources and aquifers.

Its main focus is on recent developments and the emerging international law for transboundary aquifers as reflected in the practice of states and the work of the UN International Law Commission, UN Economic Commission for Europe, and International Law Association.

Gabriel EcksteinGabriel Eckstein, Texas A&M Professor of Law and Natural Resources Program Director

The author takes an interdisciplinary approach to the subject matter and provides the scientific hydro-geological underpinning for the application of law and policy to transboundary groundwater resources. He also addresses the growing global dependence on this hidden resource, as well as both the historical and scientific context for development of the law.

The book provides case examples throughout to illustrate the various concepts and developments, including detailed examinations of the few existing transboundary aquifer agreements in operation, such as for the Genevese Aquifer between France and Switzerland, the Al-Sag/Al-Disi Aquifer between Jordan and Saudi Arabia, the Guarani Aquifer in South America, and the Nubian Sandstone, Northwestern Sahara, and Iullemeden, Taoudeni/Tanezrouft aquifers in North and West Africa.

Eckstein has received positive reviews for the book from a number of scholars in the field, including Dr. Salman M.A Salman, Editor-in-Chief, International Water Law Journal and former World Bank Water Law Adviser, who said:

“The book is a comprehensive compilation and thorough analysis of the law of transboundary groundwater. It follows a multi-disciplinary approach, augmented by the unique qualifications of the author as a hydro-geologist and international water lawyer. The book fills a large gap, and is certainly a major and timely addition to the field.”