Coastal pollution in Bahrain and its management

  • Khadija Zainal
  • Hashim Al-Sayed
  • Ismail Al-Madany


The coastline and the marine environment of Bahrain are important and unexpendable to the Bahraini people. In addition to supporting the country’s economy as most developments lie along the coastal areas, it supports a range of marine organisms that are important components of a wider ecosystem. This contribution highlights the major sources of marine pollution along the coast of Bahrain as well as the current pollution control measures. Oil pollution, apart from industrial activities, has also been related to transportation and military action in the Gulf during the hostilities of 1983, 1991 and 2003. Laws and regulations do exist in order to protect the environment but they need to be further developed and strengthened. Pollution monitoring and control are currently inadequate in the rapidly developing Kingdom. Contingency plans to prevent, remedy and ameliorate negative impact from oil spills are available but they need to be improved. Generally future activities in the Kingdom of Bahrain have to focus on the establishment of an integrated coastal zone management plan.


Land Reclamation Marine Pollution Bulletin Pearl Oyster Coastal Zone Management Desalination Plant 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. AbdulGaffar, A. 2004. Environmental problems and sustainability in Bahrain. National Democratic Action Society Publication, The Kingdom of Bahrain.Google Scholar
  2. Abdulridha, H. 2006. Assessment of heavy metals in locally caught and imported seafood during the period 1997–2003. MSc. Thesis, the University of Bahrain, 92 pp.Google Scholar
  3. Al-Madany, I and Al-Sayed, H. 2000. Bahrain Marine Environment. Book series on Wildlife No. 7. The National Commission for Wildlife Protection. 189 pp.Google Scholar
  4. Al-Madani I. 1994. Industrial effluents and Bahrain coastal pollution by oil hydrocarbons, Industrial Cooperation, 15: 41–52.Google Scholar
  5. Al-Sayed, H., Mahasneh, A., and Al-Saad, J. 1994. Variations in trace metal concentrations in seawater and Pearl Oyster Pinctada radiata from Bahrain (Arabian Gulf). Marine Pollution Bulletin, 28: 370–374.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Al-Sayed, H., Al-Saad, J., Madany, I., and Al-Hooti, D. 1996. Heavy metals in the Grouper fish Epinephelus coioides from the coast of Bahrain: An Assessment of monthly and spatial trends. International Journal of Environmental Studies, 50: 237–246.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Al-Sayed, H., Ghanem, E.H. and Saleh, K. M. 2005. Bacterial community and some physico-chemical characteristics in a subtropical mangrove environ-ment in Bahrain. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 50: 147–155.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Al-Sayed, H. and Dairi, M. 2006. Metal accumulation in the edible marine snail Turbo coronatus (Gmelin) from different locations in Bahrain. Arab Gulf Journal of Scientific Research, 24(2): 48–57.Google Scholar
  9. Al-Yakoob, S., Saeeed, T. and Al-Hashash, H. 1993. Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons in edible tissue of fish from the Gulf after the 1991 Oil Spill. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 27: 297–301.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Attar, K., El-Faer, Z., Rawdah, T and Tawabini, B. 1992. Levels of arsenic in fish from Arabian Gulf. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 24: 94–97.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Burns, K.A., Ehrhardt, M.G., Howes, B.L. and Taylor, C.D. 1993. Subtidal Benthic respiration and production near the heavily oiled Gulf coast of Saudi Arabia. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 27: 199–205.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Dairi, M., Al-Alawi, S.M., and Al-Sayed, H. 1998. Study of heavy metals in the gills of two edible clam species (Marcia flammea and protopes sp.) in Bahrain. Regional Conference on Marine Environment. Gulf, Doha, Qatar, (Abstract).Google Scholar
  13. Fowler S., Readman J., Oregioni B., Villeneuve J. and McKay K. 1993. Petroleum hydrocarbons and trace metals in near shore Gulf sediments and biota before and after the 1991 war: An assessment of temporal and spatial trends. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 27: 171–182.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Hayes, M, O., Michel, J., Montello, T.M., Aurand, D.V., Al-Mansi, A.M., Al-Moamen, A., Sauer, T.C. and Thayer, G.W. 1993. Distribution and weathering of shoreline oil one year after the Gulf War Oil Spill. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 27: 135–142.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Khamdan, S. and Juma, H. 2004. Challenges on new horizon towards managing the global environment and water resources. The joint Kingdom of Bahrain-Japan Symposium. January 18–20 2004.Google Scholar
  16. Krahn, M., Ylitalo, G.M., Buzitis, J., Bolton, J.L., Wigren, C.A., Chan, Sin-Lam and Varanasi. U. 1993. Analyses of petroleum-related contaminants in marine fish and sediments following the Gulf Oil Spill. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 27: 285–292.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Lattemann, S. and Höpner, T. 2008. Impacts of seawater desalination plants on the marine environment of the Gulf. In: Abuzinada, A.H., Barth, H.-J., Krupp, F., Böer, B. and Al Abdessalaam, T.Z. (eds), Protecting the Gulf’s marine ecosystems from pollution. Birkhäuser, Switzerland, pp. 191–205.Google Scholar
  18. Linden, O., Larsson, U. 1986. Study of the marine environment in the area of the BAPCO refinery. Swedish Environmental ResearchGroup. 23 pp.Google Scholar
  19. Linden, O., Larsson, U. and Al-Alawai, Z. 1988. Effect of chronic oil pollution in a shallow sub-tropical marine environment. Oil and Chemical Pollution, 5: 65–79.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Linden, O. and Larsson, U. 1997. Marine environment assessment of the BAPCO Refinery. Swedish Environmental Research Group. 28 pp.Google Scholar
  21. Linden, O. and Larsson, U. 2002. Marine environment assessment off the BAPCO refinery. Swedish Environmental Research Group. 43 pp.Google Scholar
  22. Madany, I and Raveendran, E. 1991. Characteristics of agricultural drainage water in Bahrain. The Science of the Total Environment, 104: 239–247.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Madany, I., Wagab, A. and Al-Alawi, Z. 1996. Trace metals concentrations in marine organisms from the coastal areas of Bahrain, Arabian Gulf. Water, Air, and Soil Pollution, 91: 233–248.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Mahaseneh, A.M. and Al-Sayed, H. 1994. Levels of chlorinated hydrocarbons, total polychlorinated biphenyls and total hydrocarbons in the Pearl Osyter Pinctada radiata from Bahrain (Arabian Gulf). Marine Research, 3(2): 15–25.Google Scholar
  25. Madany, I.M., Al-Haddad, A., Jaffar, A. and Al-Shirbini, E.S. 1994. Spatial and temporal distributions of aromatic petroleum hydrocarbons in the coastal waters of Bahrain. Arch. Environ. Contam. Toxicol, 26: 185–190.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Madany, I.M., Al-Haddad, A., Jaffar, A. and Al-Shirbini, E.S. 1998. Variations in the concentration of aromatic petroleum hydrocarbons in Bahraini coastal waters during the period October 1993 to December 1995. Environment International, 24(1/2): 61–66.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Mayoof, W. 2006. Air quality and chemistry of airborne particulates’ (determination of inorganic particulates in the atmosphere of the industrial, urban and rural areas in Bahrain and their correlation with meteorological conditions. MSc. Thesis, The University of Bahrain, 74 pp.Google Scholar
  28. Michel, J., Hayes, M, O., Keenan, R.S., Sauer, T.C., Thayer, G.W., Jensen, J. R., Jensen, J.R. and Narumalani, S. 1993. Contamination of nearshore subtidal sediments of Saudi Arabia from the Gulf War Oil Spill. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 27: 109–116.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Price, A.R.G. and Robinson, J.H. (eds) 1993. The 1991 Gulf War: Coastal and marine environmental consequences. Marine Pollution Bulletin, Vol. 27, Pergamon Press.Google Scholar
  30. Qureshi, A., Mahaseneh, A., Al-Sayed, H., Al-Buflasa, A and Al-Shuaibi, M. 1993. Feacal pollution of Pearl Oyster (Pinctada radiata). Water Science Technology, 27: 35–39.Google Scholar
  31. ROPME 2003. State of the marine environment report. Regional Organisation for the Protection of the Marine Environment, Kuwait.Google Scholar
  32. Zainal, K., Al-Madany, I., and Zainal, W. 2004. Quantity and composition of marine debris at the bottom of the sea in the Kingdom of Bahrain, Arabian Gulf. Abstract. The 4th International Conference on Marine Pollution and Ecotoxicology, May 2004. HongKong, China.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Birkhäuser Verlag/Switzerland 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Khadija Zainal
    • 1
  • Hashim Al-Sayed
    • 1
  • Ismail Al-Madany
    • 1
  1. 1.Biology DepartmentUniversity of BahrainManamaBahrain

Personalised recommendations