A review of water resources in Egypt indicates that Nile water is fully utilized and the available quantity could potentially decrease by approximately 19% due to proposed water usage by neighboring countries. Seawater desalination and groundwater extraction are the only options to increase Egypt's water supply. The extraction and desalination of brackish groundwater is suggested to develop sustainable decentralized communities. A review of seven main hydro-geological systems across six regions in Egypt is conducted to identify areas with access to brackish groundwater and aquifers are ranked on the potential for sustainable development using multi-criteria analysis based on literature data for productivity, renewability, groundwater depth and development potential. Approximately 55% of Egypt's area has access to brackish groundwater, 47% of which has access to aquifers with moderate to high potential for development. Five high priority areas have been identified for establishing decentralized communities based on brackish groundwater extraction: Areas with access to the Nubian aquifer, the Quaternary aquifer in the central parts of the Sinai Peninsula, in the vicinity of the Nile River in the Eastern Desert and the Western Desert south of Cairo, and the coastal aquifers along the north west Mediterranean coast and the Suez Gulf.

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