Glossary

E

Earth Observation (EO)EO is the study of Earth and its changing environment by observing the atmosphere, oceans, and land through remote sensing technologies.
EC (European Commission)The European Commission is the executive body of the European Union. The body is responsible for proposing legislation, implementing decisions, upholding the Union's treaties and the general day-to-day running of the Union.
Ecological Flow Requirements (EFR)The water flow requirements needed to maintain the riverine ecology, recharge riverine aquifers and maintain the river channel.
Ecological integrityA condition that is determined to be characteristic of its natural region and likely to persist, including abiotic components and the composition and abundance of native species and biological communities, rates of change and supporting processes (Canada National Parks Act, 2000).
Ecological reserveRelates to the water reserved to protect and sustain the aquatic ecosystems in order to secure ecologically sustainable development and water use.
EcologyThe scientific study of: 1) the interactions or relationships between organisms and their environment, 2) the interactions that determine the distribution and abundance of organisms.
Economic cooperationTwo or more countries working together to promote their common economic interests through joint projects and programmes, physical or otherwise.
Economic efficiencyUsing of resources in such a way as to maximize the production of goods and services.
Economic goodA scarce resource that is limited in quantities in comparison to the demand for the resource. Treating water as an economic good recognises that water has an opportunity cost.
Economic growthThe steady process by which the productive capacity of the economy is increased over time to bring about rising levels of national output and income.
Economic integrationThe merging to varying degrees of the economies and economic policies of two or more countries in a given region.
Economic water scarcityA term used to describe lack of access to water, not from physical shortages, but the economic means to sustainably provide water in sufficient quantity and/or quality.
EcoregionA region characterized by distinctive regional ecological factors, including climate, physiography, vegetation, soil, water and fauna.
EcosystemGroups and communities of organisms (animals, plants, insects and micro-organisms) that form one functioning unit. It also includes all of the non-living physical and chemical factors of the environment that maintain its existence, linked together through nutrient cycling and energy flow.
Ecosystem goods & servicesBenefits derived from ecosystems. Goods provided by ecosystems are usually more tangible benefits such as food products, fuel wood, drinking water or timber. Ecosystem services are usually enabling benefits that people obtain from ecosystems and include provisioning services; regulating services; supporting services; and cultural services.
Ecosystem healthA concept that uses a systematic approach to the preventative, diagnostic, and prognostic aspects of ecosystem management, and to the understanding of relationships between ecosystem health and human health. It seeks to understand and optimize the intrinsic capacity of an ecosystem for self-renewal while meeting reasonable human goals. It encompasses the role of societal values, attitudes and goals in shaping our conception of health at human and ecosystem scales (University of Western Ontario’s Ecosystem Health group).
Ecosystem servicesThe goods (tangible resources) and services (functions) provided by an ecosystem.
EcotoneAn area of transition or overlap between two habitat types.
EcotourismDefined as tourism that is sustainable and environmentally and culturally sensitive, is a subset of nature-based tourism.
EcozoneLargest scale of biogeographical division. WWF use 8 primary ecozones: 1. Nearctic; 2. Palearctic; 3. Afrotropic; 4. Indo-Malaya; 5. Australasia; 6. Neotropic; 7. Oceania; 8. Antarctic.
EE&A (Environmental Education and Awareness)The Environmental Education and awareness (EE&A) is a special component within the Nile Transboundary Environmental Action Project (NTEAP). It is aimed atcreating awareness on the River Nile environmental threats and their impacts on communitylivelihoods and stimulating behavioural change.
EffluentAn outflow of liquid waste released from a facility such as a sewage treatment plant or industrial operation.
EFR (Ecological Flow Requirements)The water flow requirements needed to maintain the riverine ecology, recharge riverine aquifers and maintain the river channel.
El NiñoName given to the occasional development of warm ocean surface waters along the coast of Ecuador and Peru. When this warming occurs the tropical Pacific trade winds weaken and the usual upwelling of cold, nutrient rich deep ocean water off the coast of Ecuador and Peru is reduced. The El Nino normally occurs around Christmas and lasts usually for a few weeks to a few months. Sometimes an extremely warm event can develop that lasts for much longer time periods.
El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO)Name given to the occasional development of warm ocean surface waters along the coast of Ecuador and Peru. When this warming occurs the tropical Pacific trade winds weaken and the usual upwelling of cold, nutrient rich deep ocean water off the coast of Ecuador and Peru is reduced. The El Nino normally occurs around Christmas and lasts usually for a few weeks to a few months. Sometimes an extremely warm event can develop that lasts for much longer time periods.
Electrical Conductivity (EC)A physical characteristic of water used to indicate the level of Total Dissolved Solids in water; the level of electrical conductivity is proportional to the amount of dissolved solids found in the water.
Electrical Conductivity (EC)A physical characteristic of water used to indicate the level of Total Dissolved Solids in water; the level of electrical conductivity is proportional to the amount of dissolved solids found in the water.
EndangeredFacing a very high risk of extinction in the wild.
EndemicOccurring naturally in only one specific area.
EndemismAn organism being endemic - exclusively native to a particular location.
Endocrine disruptersSubstances that act like hormones in the endocrine system and disrupt the physiologic function of hormones.
Endorheic basin or mekgachaA closed drainage basin that does not allow outflow to other waterbodies such as rivers or oceans.
ENSO (El Niño Southern Oscillation)Name given to the occasional development of warm ocean surface waters along the coast of Ecuador and Peru. When this warming occurs the tropical Pacific trade winds weaken and the usual upwelling of cold, nutrient rich deep ocean water off the coast of Ecuador and Peru is reduced. The El Nino normally occurs around Christmas and lasts usually for a few weeks to a few months. Sometimes an extremely warm event can develop that lasts for much longer time periods.
Environmental Education and Awareness (EE&A)The Environmental Education and awareness (EE&A) is a special component within the Nile Transboundary Environmental Action Project (NTEAP). It is aimed atcreating awareness on the River Nile environmental threats and their impacts on communitylivelihoods and stimulating behavioural change.
Environmental effects monitoringThe repetitive and systematic measurement of environmental components to test specific hypotheses regarding the effects of human activity on the environment.
Environmental flow requirementThe water that is deliberately left in the river or released from a reservoir for maintaining the structure and function of aquatic ecosystems downstream.
Environmental impact assessmentA procedure that examines the possible environmental consequences of implementing a project, program, or policy.
Environmental managementThe management of human interaction with and impact on the natural environment. Environmental management is concerned with the links between the natural world and human social, cultural, and economic systems.
Environmental management planA plan outlining the means of achieving environmental objectives and goals.
Environmental mitigation compliance monitoringMonitoring conducted to determine whether specified environmental mitigation measures are being implemented properly and are having the intended effect.
Environmental monitoringThe collection of systematic, geo-referenced observations of the environment to detect changes over time and space.
EO (Earth Observation)EO is the study of earth and its changing environment by observing the atmosphere, oceans, and land through remote sensing technologies.
EphemeralStream which flows only in direct response to precipitation or to the flow of an intermittent spring.
EpililoBaskets woven from palm leaves in Namibia.
EpisodicTerm used to describe rainfall that occurs in single or multiple events, with no distinct pattern.
Equatorial Lakes PlateauAn elevated plateau bounded by two branches of the Rift Valley.
EquityThe equity dimension of governance seeks to ensure that development is inclusive, that all people benefit from well-functioning political and economic institutions and political, economic and social processes .
ErosionThe wearing away, detachment, and movement of surface materials by forces of wind, water, or ice.
EstuariesSomewhat enclosed coastal areas at the mouths of a river where nutrient rich fresh water meets with salty ocean water.
EstuarineSomewhat enclosed coastal area at the mouth of some rivers, where nutrient rich fresh water meets with salty ocean water.
EstuarySomewhat enclosed coastal area at the mouth of a river where nutrient rich fresh water meets with salty ocean water.
EtitiTraditional clay pot in Namibia.
European Commission (EC)The European Commission is the executive body of the European Union. The body is responsible for proposing legislation, implementing decisions, upholding the Union's treaties and the general day-to-day running of the Union.
EutrophicAn aquatic environment that has an excessive supply of nutrients, mostly in the form of nitrates and phosphates.
EutrophicationThe accumulation of nutrients in a waterbody that results in excessive growth of organisms and depletion of oxygen.
EvaporationThe conversion of a liquid substance to a gaseous state.
EvapotranspirationThe loss of water to the atmosphere via the combined effects of evaporation and transpiration.
ExcludabilityRefers to the possibility of controlling access to a natural resource or service.
ExoenzymesAn enzyme secreted by a cell that functions outside of the cell it originated from.
ExploitationThe improper or over use of a resource.
ExtinctNo longer in existence.