Most of Egypt is a vast desert with almost no rainfall. The River Nile is one of the longest rivers in the world and it flows northwards from the mountains of Tanzania for over 6,000km on its way to the Mediterranean Sea. For more than 6,000 years the river has enabled people to live in Egypt. Today, 50 million people live within a few miles of the river and completely depend on its water. The river is home to many fish and provides a valuable source of food. The ancient Egyptians invented a number of different ways to bring water from the Nile up onto dry land. The shaduf and wooden water wheels were designed thousands of years ago to enable farmers to water their crops, and such methods are still used by farmers today. The Romans introduced the sakia 2,300 years ago and they are still used today to raise water from underground wells. Some farmers now use electrical pumps to take water from the Nile onto farmland. Crops grown along the Nile and fish caught in the river provide food for the people of Egypt. With a growing population there is an increasing pressure on these resources.
- This clip is from:
- First broadcast:
- 11 May 1998
This clip could be used as part of a research topic which looks to answer the question: "How does the River Nile help people survive in dry land?" Children could also look into other large water sources in the world that have a big impact into its surrounding communities.