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Agua y geopolítica

Mensaje por ivan_077 el Enero 15th 2015, 20:03


The role of water in future geopolitics (self.geopolitics)

enviado 2 meses atrás * por JerryLeRow

Hypothesis: Right off, I think in the future some countries, those who can't afford importing water, desalination plants or other ways to meet their demand, will fight for water. Others will fight with water. And some perhaps against water.

We see heavy droughts in southwestern US states, going on for years, and Governors like Brown choosing a railway system over (far cheaper) investments to secure water supply for his state. Shocking images and studies indicate several regions worldwide are already experiencing a lack of water and this trend may increase.

Also we see water being used as weapon, e.g. in the syria/iraq region; turkey controlling some dams in the north, terrorists being able to seize dams in the south. Meanwhile e.g. ethiopia, a small and weak african country builds a dam that reduces water flow in the nile and thereby decreasing the water supply of egypt, the #1 military power in this region.

Due to some extreme weather phenomenas more and more countries will have to invest in their SAR equipment and personnel (and later rebuilding). More coastal nations will be hit by natural disasters and will have ~<100 hours to save perhaps millions of lives. This means money will be missing at other programs and constrain (economic) development in those poorer countries that, unlike e.g. USA with its massive military and SAR capabilities, have to invest high amounts of money first to meet the necessary levels of protection.

Rich countries will easily, compared to the poorer ones, be able to afford desalination plants, drilling for new wells, invest into water treatment plants etc.

My question now: How do you, overall, see the role of water regarding future geopolitics/-economics and what consequences do you think this will have? How do you see my hypothesis?

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"No hay mas diferencia entre los hombres que el vicio o la virtud" Jose Maria Morelos y Pavon.

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Re: Agua y geopolítica

Mensaje por ivan_077 el Enero 15th 2015, 20:03

[Tienes que estar registrado y conectado para ver este vínculo]

__________________________________________________________________________________________________
"No hay mas diferencia entre los hombres que el vicio o la virtud" Jose Maria Morelos y Pavon.

No hay raza inferior; solo hay sujetos inferiores
Bendita se la muerte, porque a nadie le concede lo que no les da a todos los demas;alabada sea la muerte que se yergue piadosa ante el hombre que ha cumplido su deber.
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Re: Agua y geopolítica

Mensaje por ivan_077 el Enero 15th 2015, 20:05



The Geopolitics of Water in the Nile River Basin
By Prof. Majeed A. Rahman
Global Research, February 15, 2014
Global Research 24 July 2011
Region: Middle East & North Africa, sub-Saharan Africa
Theme: Environment
The Geopolitics of Water in the Nile River Basin

In Africa, access to water is one of the most critical aspects of human survival. Today, about one third of the total population lack access to water. Constituting 300 million people and about 313 million people lack proper sanitation. (World Water Council 2006). As result, many riparian countries surrounding the Nile river basin have expressed direct stake in the water resources hitherto seldom expressed in the past.

In this paper, I argue that due to the lack of consensus over the use of the Nile basin regarding whether or not “water sharing” or “benefit sharing” has a tendency to escalate the situation in to transboundary conflict involving emerging dominant states such as the tension between Ethiopia-Egypt over the Nile river basin. At the same time, this paper further contributes to the Collier- Hoeffler conflict model in order to analyze the transboundary challenges, and Egypt’s position as the hegemonic power in the horn of Africa contested by Ethiopia. Collier- Hoeffler model is used to predict the occurrence of conflicts as a result of empirical economic variables in African states given the sporadic civil strife in many parts of Africa. In order to simplify my argument and analysis, I focused on Ethiopia and Egypt to explicate the extent of water crisis in the North Eastern part of Africa.

One may question why Ethiopia? My answers are grounded in three main assumptions. The first is based on the failed Anglo-Ethiopia treaty in 1902 which never materialized. The second assumption is based on the exclusion of Ethiopia, since 1902 and the subsequent water agreement of 1929 between Britain and Egypt and the 1959 water agreement between Egypt and Sudan after the later became independent in 1956. The final assumption is the emergence of Ethiopia as a powerful and influential nation in the horn of Africa because of its military power in the sub region.

Ethiopia has pushed forward her demand to develop water resources through hydroelectric power along the Nile. However, for several decades, Egypt has denied other riparian countries complete access to water resources along the Nile, and for that matter has exercised her hegemonic powers over the development and control of the use of water resources in the Nile river basin for many decades. The Nile river basin has survived centuries, and for many years has served as Egypt’s economic hub, political power and growth since ancient times. The water resources in the Nile basins have also served as economic, political, social and cultural achievements of Egypt’s influence in the sub region1.

The water resources in the past were used as trade routes which enhanced Egypt’s mobile communication and international relations for centuries. In which many earlier contacts of Egypt described Egypt as “the gift of the Nile” This hegemonic status enjoyed, since the beginning of earlier civilizations of the ancient kingdoms of Egyptian civilization compelled the ancient philosopher Herodotus to describe this civilization as “Egypt is the Nile and the Nile is Egypt.” This again coincides the period of Egyptian economic boom and its political dominion. What has further entrenched Egypt’s position in the past, which ultimately contributed to Egypt’s power over other riparian countries in the Nile river basin is the 1929 water treaty agreement signed between Egypt and Britain2. Britain, then in charge of many riparian countries as colonies negotiated with Egypt on behalf of its colonies, thereby, giving Egypt an urge over other riparian countries in the use and access to water resources in the river basin.

However, with the attainment of independence by these countries, high population growth, global warming, global economic crisis natural disasters, political development, pollution and resource depletion, industrialization as well as urbanization, high capital cost of water drilling, poor rural electricity for pumping underground water have impelled these riparian countries to engage Egypt’s control in order to re-negotiate earlier water treaties and to abrogate all attempt by Egypt to control the use and development of water resources over the Nile3. Egypt has been in control of the Nile Rivers for a long time and has emerged as the major country that has complete access to the Nile. The shortages of water and water resources in Ethiopia and of course Sudan has prompted those countries to take a second look at Egypt’s access to the Nile, most especially Ethiopia’s attempt to confront Egypt in the Nile river. Berman and Paul concluded that the tension between Egypt and Ethiopia over the Nile is likely to escalate to a war in the future. Due to Ethiopia’s rapidly growing population, in consequence, Ethiopia’s water demand has almost doubled in the last decade4.

Nile River Basin and Declining Water Resources

The Nile river basin comprises of ten countries namely, Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda. These countries are known as the ten riparian countries due to their proximity to the Nile river basin5. It is the longest river in the world constituting about 6700 km or 4100 miles long and drains almost all ten aforementioned countries. The flow of the Nile as a naturally endowed commodity has benefited North Eastern countries’ economic activities through agricultural and tourism. About 90% of Egypt’s land mark is desert and therefore, many populations have concentrated along the Nile river basin, due the economic opportunities available along the Nile river basin couple with irrigation activity for landscape farming and animal rearing.6

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The complete dependence of water resources over the centuries have caused the Nile river basin to deplete, especially of essential material resources causing high rate of unemployment, diseases and hunger in the countries depending on the water resources. Declan et al, argue that the resource depletion in the Nile river basin is due to three spatial factors, namely global green house effect, regional (through land use) and river basin (land management). This assertion is also consistent with Oxfam studies in Askum region and the drought that has engulfed the entire country. In a brief quote Oxfam indicated the situation in Ethiopia and said:

“Climate variability in Ethiopia is not new – but now, in addition to the usual struggles, Ethiopians living in poverty are additionally suffering the effects of climate change – both more variable climate and more extreme weather events. People who are already poor and marginalized are struggling with the added burden of climate variability. For now, this means that the little that they have goes to dealing with the current unpredictable weather because their livelihoods are so dependent on it. When selling off assets becomes a mean to cope, there is little left to plan for the future. Thus, communities are faced with simultaneously increasing climate variability, and with it increasing risk and vulnerability.7”

Global warming due to climatic conditions and green house emission effect according to Declan et al is one of the contributing factors for the recent water resource decline in the Nile river basin8. They argued that high temperature couple with underground water reduction in the Blue Rivers in Egypt and Sudan is undergoing drastic impact of global warming. As a result, development along the Nile River has led to water resource pollutions by many riparian countries.9

For example, the Ethiopian and Eritrean wars in the late 1990s polluted a substantial part of the river basin with military accoutrements and missile deposits into the Nile Rivers. This pollution activity is further exacerbated by the huge population growth concentrated in the river basin. This populations growth according to the world water council 2006 have double in the last two decades, and continues to rise amidst migrations to the Nile river basins.10

The impact of population pressures and the resource decline in the river basins is also consistent with Aston’s argument that the southern and the northern portions get less rainfall than their equatorial neighboring countries.11 For example the Nile has two confluent tributaries connecting the White Nile and the Blue Nile, the Blue Nile which is considered the most fertile for crop production flows from Lake Tanna in Ethiopia through to Sudan from the South East.12 The Blue and White river basins also coincide with the division of upstream and downstream riparian, and their source of water. While the upstream mainly benefit on water rainfall, the down streams such as the blue river basins enjoys physical flow of water.

Braune, and Youngxin argue that the demand for allocation of water resources has witnessed several treaties and pointed out that “in the past 60 years there have been over 200 international treaties on water and only 37 cases reported on violence between countries.13.” These magnitude of the problem resulted in lack of adequate resolution in resource allocation of water resources.

The impact of Industrialization and mechanization has played a significant role as a result of expansion projects along the Nile river basin. In 2004, the Ethiopian minister for trade accused Egypt of using undiplomatic strategies to control Ethiopia’s development projects on the Nile. Said, “Egypt has been pressuring international financial institutions to desist from assisting Ethiopia in carrying out development projects in the Nile basin.14.”

Farming along the Nile is one of the major sources of livelihood for communities living along the concentrated Nile river basins, but the ensuing drought, famine, population growth and land degradation have impacted the water resources in the Nile river basin. The Environmental Protection Agency in its 2010 report also argued that land degradation and deforestation in the river basin due to excessive burning for land cultivation in many parts of the Nile River has virtually eroded the oasis making it extremely tough for cultivation and water conservation.15

Thus before the 1950s, there were fewer resentments on the Nile water resources by riparian countries, however with changing circumstances such as declining water resources, hunger, and diseases, riparian countries have decided to renegotiate themselves in order to access the Nile. Kenya together with Ethiopia are pioneering this process as seen in the cessionary address to parliament by the Member of Parliament for Kenya Paul Muite in 2004 who remarked “Kenyans are today importing agricultural produce from Egypt as a result of their use of the Nile water.” In a similar statement, Moses Wetangula, the assistant minister for foreign affairs remarked “Kenya will not accept any restriction on use of lake Victoria or the river Nile” and stated “ it however does not wish to be alone ranger in deciding how to use the waters, and has consequently sought the involvement of involved countries.”16

Methodology

Conflict Theory and the Collier-Hoeffler Model

Kofi Anan reiterated that “Unsustainable practices are woven deeply in to the fabric of modern life. Land degradation threatens food security. Forest destruction threatens biodiversity. Water pollution threatens public health, and fierce competition for fresh water may well become a source of conflicts and wars in the future.’’

This statement by Kofi Anan is buttressed by Amery when he alluded to the Egyptian Member of Parliament’s assertion that Egypt’s “national security should not only be viewed in military terms, but also in terms of wars over waters17.” The horn of Africa has been bedeviled by conflicts, both interstate and civil wars for several years now. These conflicts are mainly concentrated on the north east and central Africa. While many of these conflicts have been disputes over land occupation in mainly oil rich areas of the Congo, others have been the issue of diverting water resources. This paper examines the water scarcity in the North East with an attempt to focus on Egypt and Ethiopia through the Collier-Hoefer model of theory of civil wars in order to construct the model on water scarcity with an attempt to reconcile the tensions over water resources and its effects on the people of the north East African people.

There have been several applications and interpretations of the earlier conflict theorists propounded by earlier scholars such as Karl Marx, Lenin, and Weber. Collier-Hoeffer, also known as the C-H model is one of such interpretation of recent times. Their analyses on conflict is based on the framework of many variables such as tribes, identities, economics, religion and social status in Africa, and subjecting the data to a regression analysis and concluded that of the many variables identified in Africa and the examination of the 78 five year increments(1960-1999) in which conflicts occur, and of five year 1, 600 inputs in which no conflicts occur, concluded that based on the data set that economic factors rather than ethnic, or religious, identities are the bane of conflicts in Africa. In complementing this model with the earlier conflict theory propounded by Karl Marx, Marx, recognized the significance of the social and interactions within a given society. These interactions according Karl Max are characterized by conflicts. Hence, the conflict between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie of the capitalist system forms a synthesis of the forces of the interaction within the system.18

Marx, again reiterated the fact that these social and human interactions is dialectical in the sense that when a dominant nation seeks to control dependent nations or peripheral countries what yields in consequence is the tension to rebel against the oppressor by dependent states in order to agitate for equitable and fair share of national resources. This point is consistent with the C-H model when they argued with empirical data on the causes of conflicts in Africa, and concluded that economic factors are the significant predictor of conflict in many parts of the African continent. Therefore, according to C-H, economic reasons contributed to a large extent the greater portion of conflicts in Africa19. While these economic reasons are varied and numerous due to the resources available in a given region and the allocation of resource whether naturally endowed or man-made, any form of competition to control these resources or allocation of resources will naturally generate two outcomes: tension and potential conflict, and cooperation. In this case, Egypt’s sole access to the Nile for centuries now has invariably gratified itself as the sole control of the Nile water resources.

As a result of the 1929 mandate that gave Egypt absolute control of water resources in the Nile, she has worked to sabotage many riparian countries through other diplomatic and international treaties. Ethiopia has vowed to engage Egypt over the control of water resources in the Nile valley basin. This is exemplified in many water agreement initiated by Ethiopia and the other riparian countries to abrogate all previous agreement hitherto entered by Egypt. Consequently, Stars argues that the looming tension between Egypt and the riparian countries initiated by Ethiopia is a recipe for conflict in the North Eastern Africa20. For instance, these tensions are exemplified in Egypt’s response to Kenya’s assistant foreign affairs minister’s statement when Mohammed Abu Zeid, Egypt’s minister for water resources remarked that Kenya’s statements were a “a declaration of war” against Egypt and subsequently threatened Kenya of economic and political embargo.21

This looming tension among riparian countries is further worsened by Kenya’s continuing threat of engagement. In 2002, a senior Kenyan minister Raila Odinga, called for the review and renegotiation of the 1929 treaty which gave Egypt the right to veto construction projects on the Nile river basin, and said “it was signed on behalf of governments which were not in existence at that time.” This paper’s argument is further rooted in the idea that there are emerging players such as Kenya and Ethiopia in the horn of Africa as major hydro-political powers to engage Egypt’s hydro-hegemonic status. Prior to the Nile basin initiative in February 1999, Wondwosen, argues that there have been several similar water treaties such as the 1993 Technical Committee to promote development cooperation among riparian countries. Also, in 1995 the Nile Basin Action Plan was launched, and in 1997, the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) through collaborations with the World Bank attempted to foster cooperation among riparian countries to promote dialogue.22

This initiative including earlier treaties already mentioned shows the magnitude of the problem in the Nile basin, and of course the consensus necessary to equitably allocate water resources and thereby encourage development projects along the Nile. In 2010, for instance, Ethiopia announced that it was initiating a hydro-electric development projects in order to improve its country’s electric and energy needs. This announcement few days later saw resentment by Egypt and Egypt attempt to veto any such policy along the Nile. While Ethiopia is poised to making this project reality, Egypt has begun galvanizing international support in order to prevent Ethiopia from undertaking such projects.

Cascao, argued that the asymmetrical flow of water resources in the Nile river basin and the access to physical flow of the blue Nile by Egypt and Sudan in the downstream has extremely heighten hydro-political tension over the Nile. These tensions have attracted the United Nations organizations interventions and other international organization on matters concerning the distribution and allocation of water resources in the Nile river basin and in which compensation are offered to other riparian countries unequal access to the distribution of water resources, especially those on the upstream who only benefit rainfall.23

Thus in 1999, nine riparian countries met in Dar Es Salem, Tanzania by the Council of Minister of Water Affairs of Nile River Basin Countries and agreed to cooperate in solidarity for equitable allocation of water resources in the Nile basin as well as for economic integration through sustainable development.24

This economic solidarity through cooperation is declared in the Nile Basin Initiative as the shared vision by riparian countries to promote cooperation and economic well being, while at the same time “to achieve sustainable socio-economic development through the equitable utilization of, & benefit from, the common Nile Basin water resources25.” This Nile Basin Initiative is the first attempt by riparian countries to push demand for equal access to the Nile, and at the time promoting economic cooperation. Egypt’s defiance of the NBI and its lack of participation in the NBI’s initial attempt to convene such a cooperation agreement is a crucial aspect of the NBI’s objective to consolidate through cooperation in the negotiation for equitable distribution. The subsequent institutional mechanism for policy guidelines for riparian countries to agree to follow is set forth by NBI in order to stimulate cooperation rather than intimidation in the allocation of water resources.

The following objectives in February 1999 were set up by the NBI as follows:26

• To develop the Nile Basin water resources in a sustainable and equitable way to ensure
• prosperity, security, and peace for all its peoples
• To ensure efficient water management and the optimal use of the resources
• To ensure cooperation and joint action between the riparian countries, seeking win-win gains
• To target poverty eradication and promote economic integration
• To ensure that the program results in a move from planning to action.

Thus among the NBI’s core functions include among others to promote water resource management, water resource development and capacity building enhanced through cooperation. These initiative have proven worthwhile, in preventing a escalating a major conflict in the region, although there are still tensions among riparian countries along the Nile. Egypt still exercises hydro hegemonic powers in the region because of her absolute control of the Nile basin, Egypt has participated and is willing to cooperate with other riparian countries in bringing lasting solutions to the increasing demand of water resources on the Nile river basin. When it comes down to water resource allocation and distribution, it has always been sidelined and not considered a significant issue in the solution to the Nile problem.

Africa’s interstate conflicts in the past have been on a number of issues such as ethnic and tribal as well as land disputes and acquisitions. The discovery of oil however has proven to be a blessing in disguise in many of the oil regions of Africa. In the Congo for instance, there have been several conflicts with rebels over the control of oil regions of the Brazzaville. This area has not been spared of violence and mayhem for several decades now. In Nigeria for example, the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) has created havoc and tensions culminating in violence and attacks on oil expatriates in the Niger Delta region. These oil regions in Africa today are bedeviled with conflicts, violent attacks and conflicts in order to control oil resources. The least said about the diamond and gold areas of sub Saharan Africa the better. Similarly, and in consistent with the paradigm this paper takes is the assertion that water conflicts like many of the natural endowed assets bestowed on the African continent is a bane for the continent’s development. In the cases of the Nile, although there is no any imminent conflict, scholars are predicting that the lack of concrete and up-to-date resolution on the water policy regarding the distribution of water resources on the Nile is a recipe for conflict in the region.

Relations of Power

As already mentioned and by extension Herodotus comments on Egypt as “the gift of the Nile,” has been extrapolated by Egypt in order to exercise hydro-political power in the Nile river basin for several decades. This status Egypt has enjoyed for some time now without allowing any riparian countries along the Nile to negotiate any form of control on water resources and development projects such as hydro electric power by neighboring countries. The asymmetrical flow of water resources in the Nile has also afforded Egypt a position of dominance compared to other riparian countries who are situated upstream on the Nile. The Nile’s downstream is currently housed by Egypt and Sudan, consequently, Sudan’s attempt to renegotiate Egypt’s unilateral control on the Nile27.

In 1959, a water agreement signed between Egypt and Sudan gave Egypt 55bcm and 18bcm to Sudan. Again this uneven allocation of resource points to asymmetrical power relations of riparian countries ability to negotiate Egypt to access water resources28. Cascao, provides a theoretical understanding on this hydro power hegemony of Egypt in controlling water resources. And indicated that the hegemonic power of Egypt is due to many factors in the horn of Africa, but argues that this hegemonic status is about to end as counter hydro hegemonic powers are beginning to emerge in order to contest Egypt’s long standing hegemony in the region. I totally agree with Cascoa, and in fact her analysis is in line with my argument that the position Egypt finds herself is about to change due to first the declining rate of water resources in the Nile.

This is because in the past when life was booming riparian countries made no mention of inequity if water resources however, with the emergence global water crisis due to global warming these riparian countries are beginning to contest power relation on the access to the Nile. Cascao points to “apparent consent” to illustrate the apparent lackadaisical attitudes of consent by riparian countries. This apparent consent, Cascoa argues was latent consents by riparian countries along the Nile on many agreements that were signed as far back in 1902. Ethiopia is a case in point. In many of these water treaties Reginald points to about 60 water agreements since the first one in 1902 which either ignored Ethiopia or Ethiopia decided to apparently consent to by keeping mute to the issue. But what is significant is a looming civil war among riparian countries. There have been scuffles between Sudan and Burundi, also Ethiopia and Eritrea and Rwanda and Somalia in the past several decades without totally engaging Egypt’s hydro-hegemonic power in the region, given the emerging hydro political configuration that is beginning to unravel29.

In order to understand the relations of power and dominance in regards to the situation in the Nile river basin it is prudent to again invoke Cascao analysis of power and dominance as they significantly hinges on the Ethiopia’s counter hegemonic strategy in the Nile river basin for some time now. Cascao begins by citing Gramsci’s definition of hegemony as “political power that flows from intellectual and moral leadership, authority, or consensus as distinguished from armed force30” she continues to argue “power is relational and the outcome of hegemonic power relations is determined by the interaction of diverse actors” diverse actors for me seem meaningful and significant here in terms of the power relations here. It can be recalled that there are ten riparian countries each diverse with varied needs and demands in regard to the fair allocation of water resources in the Nile. This diversity is yet galvanized for a common interest as seen in the Nile basin initiative put forth by the nine riparian countries.

Once gain the significant portion Egypt occupies comes under a counter hegemonic truce by riparian countries to renegotiate earlier treaties concerning the Nile river allocation of resource which is consistent with Cascao assertion that “power relations are not static or immutable” and points to a dialectical thesis of challenging the status thereby bringing in new status quo with alternatives. This dialectics is one earlier propounded by Marx and Lenin in their conflict theories regarding the suppression of groups and their simultaneous revolt of the existing status quo. In the case of the river basin, these riparian countries see themselves as having asymmetrical power relations with Egypt, and because Egypt’s consistent dominance in both economic and hegemonic political relations in the sub region, there is an attempt to contest existing status quo as seen in the earlier water treaties and allocation of resources in the Nile basin.

Based on the accusations and counter accusations on the allocation of water resources along the Nile, Ethiopia like Egypt have both galvanized for support in terms of international diplomacy and legitimacy over the use of resources in the Nile. While Egypt continues to maintain its legitimacy based of the earlier water agreements and proclamations that exclusively gave Egypt dominance with right to veto any development projects, Ethiopia has taken its stands to engage Egypt on talks to renegotiate Ethiopia’s position of the Nile resources. When it comes to international funding on the Nile river basin, the IMF and the World Bank has withhold funds for development along the Nile because of the looming tension between the riparian countries and has promised not to get itself tangled on the water crisis along the Nile river basin.31

“Water sharing” or “benefit sharing”

The debate as to whether “water sharing” or “benefit sharing” has dominated many scholarly discourse on the Nile issue. According to Teshome, benefit sharing is “the distribution of benefits through cooperation” and argues furthermore that “benefit sharing gives riparian states the chance to share the benefits derived from the use of water rather than the physical distribution of water itself32.” Teshome’s analysis regarding benefit sharing through cooperation sounds a laudable alternative to riparian countries capacity to cooperate in order to tap water resources, but this argument is idealistic given the power relations along the Nile, and the asymmetrical flow of water resources in the upstream and downstream countries could be difficult to ascertain. I offer the following reason to buttress my argument.

Most significantly, the lack of political will to cooperate by riparian countries is the number one reason benefit sharing could be difficult to achieve. Several water agreement have been launched since the 1929 Anglo Egyptian water agreement that gave Egypt the exclusive power to monitor development activities along the Nile. The lack of political will is clearly demonstrated by Ethiopia’s “apparent consent” to many water treaties that has been passed. The most recent treaty the Nile Basin Cooperative Frame Work Agreement launched in (1997-2007) shows the nature of participation by riparian countries to cooperate to achieving common goals and the allocation of water resources. This lack of political will is also consistent with Teshome argument that the lack of political leadership has exacerbated the situation to the extent that at present there is no international treaty or agreement that binds riparian countries together. Although the many cooperative agreements between upstream and downstream riparian have sidelined issues bordering benefit sharing in their agenda33.

In addition, problem in benefit sharing cooperative agreement is the fact that many riparian countries comes from different political and socio-cultural backgrounds and are therefore prone to series of political and civil upheavals that will endanger any attempt by riparian countries to cooperate for mutual benefit sharing. The most significant one is the Ethiopia Eritrea conflict that has rocked the region for several years, also the Somalia civil conflicts, the Rwanda Burundi and many others in Sudan has worked to prevent many cooperative agreement to realize its potential. Although mutual benefit is essential its implementation to a full potential is unattainable.

This argument is also supported by Cascao when she argued that cooperative agreement can be a “battle ground for opposing tendencies” (p24) Not only that but, also Egypt’s power and international diplomacy over the region. It is indeed important to acknowledge the role of Egypt’s diplomatic relations in the past that has ushered its dominance over the Nile. The strategic position of Egypt on the Suez Canal has been a strategic location for British involvement in Egypt and for British access to India through the canal. This important location of Egypt was advanced by British interest in India34. Benefit sharing or cooperative agreement by upstream and downstream countries have been in opposing terms for quite some time now. The recent National Basin Initiative (NBI) has been used as a platform by Ethiopia to get the 1959 water agreement between Egypt and Sudan annulled, since Ethiopia was excluded, and for that matter the other seven riparian countries in order to enact a comprehensive water policy that will promote the advancement of cooperative water sharing without hostilities.

Also, significant factor that hampers any cooperative agreement on benefit sharing is Egypt’s diplomatic influence on the region. If all riparian countries agree to benefit share these cooperative agreement maybe lopsided and for that matter benefit Egypt more than the other riparian because of Egypt diplomacy with Britain and US, and the international organizations including the Arab league. This point is argued in Teshome when he said “Egypt has been pressuring international institutions to desist from assisting Ethiopia in carrying out development projects in the Nile basin …it has used its influence to persuade the Arab world not to provide Ethiopia with any loans or grants for Nile water development.”

My final alternative is that several water sharing agreements have been adopted by riparian countries at least since the 1959 between Sudan and Egypt in terms of allocation of water resources. This allocation which earmarked 18 BCM to Sudan and 55BCM to Egypt is seen by Sudan as an unfair deal and have since pushed forward for renegotiation on the allocation of water resources that has given Egypt an unfair proportional distribution of resources and for development projects on the Nile. This last alternative could be dangerous in if physical allocation of water resources are to be shared among riparian countries through demarcation, this is because land demarcation and allocation of resources have been one of the dangerous recipe for conflicts currently ongoing on the continent, to physically allocate recourses is nothing but to add more insult to injuries. With emerging hydro-political powers in the region, Ethiopia and Egypt could dominate other countries and for that matter wage physical wars in order to control water resources.

On the basis of the above discussions, it can be safely concluded that the nature of tension in North Eastern Africa most, especially the Nile riparian countries are on a brink of conflict over the control and use of Nile water resources. As already pointed out, and by extension Collier-Hoeffler’s economic analysis of conflicts in Africa did not cite the potential trigger of conflict as a result of the Nile, what is significant about his model is the paradigmatic nature upon which his theory of analysis are based. And since water is a vital part of the economic resources of Africa, this papers concludes that the water resources just as any other economic resource has a full potential of tension and conflict over the Nile river basin by riparian states.

Notes

1.Wonddwossen Teshome B. “Transboundary Water cooperation in Africa: The case of the Nile Basin Initiative.” Turkish Journal of International Relations winter Vol. 7.4 2008 pp34-43
Also see Flintan, F. & Tamarat,I Spilling Blood Over Water? The case of Ethiopia, in Scarcity and Surfeit, The Ecology of Africa’s Conflict. Lind &J.& Sturman K.(eds) Institute for Security Studies, Johannesburg (2002)
2.Ibid
3.Ashton, Peter J. “Avoiding Conflicts over Africa’s Resources” Royal Swedish Academy of Science. Vol.31.3, 2002 pp236-242
4.Berman and Paul, “The New Water Politics of the Middle East. Strategic Review, Summer 1999. 21-28
5.Wonddwossen Teshome B. “Transboundary Water cooperation in Africa: The case of the Nile Basin Initiative.” Turkish Journal of International Relations winter 2008 Vol. 7.4 pp34-43
6.Alcamo, J., Hulme, M., Conway, D., & Krol, M. “Future availability of water in Egypt: The interaction of global, regional and basin scale driving forces in the Nile basin”. AMBIO – A Journal of the Human Environment, 25(5), (1996). 336.
7.Oxfam 2009 report
8.Kim, U., & Kaluarachchi, J. J. “Climate change impacts on water resources in the upper Blue Nile river basin, Ethiopia.” Journal of the American Water Resources Association, 45(6), (2009). 1361-1378.
9. ibid
10.World Water Council Report 2006
11.ibid
12.Wonddwossen Teshome B. “Transboundary Water cooperation in Africa: The case of the Nile Basin Initiative.” Turkish Journal of International Relations winter 2008 Vol. 7.4 pp34-43
14.Braune, Eberhard and Youngxin Xu2. “The role of Ground Water in the Sub Saharan Africa.” Vol. 48.2 March 2010, pp229-238
16.Cam McGrath and Sonny Baraj “Water Wars Loom along the Nile” 2004 news 24.com
17.EPA North East Africa 2010 report
18.Ibid
19.UN Secretary General Kofi Anan
20.Karl Marx. “Capital” A Critique of Political Economy Vol. 1, translated by Samuel Moore and Edward Avelling Ed. F.Engels 1887
21.Paul Collier and Anke Hoeffler. “Economic Causes of Civil War.” Oxford Economic Papers Vol50.4 1998, pp563-573. Also in Paul Collier and Anke Hoeffler Greed and Grievance in Civil War. World Bank Policy Research—Working papers number 2355 May 2000
22.J.R. Stars “Water Wars” Foreign Policy Issue 82 991pp17-20
BBC 12 DEC 2003 also see AL-Ahram, 26 February 2004
23.Ibid also see Ana Elisa Cascao “Ethiopia- Challenges to Egyptian hegemony in the Nile Basin” Water Policy 10 supplement 2 (2008)
24.Ana Elisa Cascao “Ethiopia- Challenges to Egyptian hegemony in the Nile Basin” Water Policy 10 supplement 2 (2008)
25.Ana Elisa Cascao “Ethiopia- Challenges to Egyptian hegemony in the Nile Basin” Water Policy 10 supplement 2 (2008)
26.The Nile Basin Initiative NBI
27.Ibid NBI
28.ibid
29.ibid
30.ibid
31.Gramci 1971 cite in Cascao (2008) p.18
32.World water council report 2009
33.ibid
34.ibid
35.Cascao “water policy” document No. 10

Majeed A. Rahman is Professor of African Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Milawaukee.

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"No hay mas diferencia entre los hombres que el vicio o la virtud" Jose Maria Morelos y Pavon.

No hay raza inferior; solo hay sujetos inferiores
Bendita se la muerte, porque a nadie le concede lo que no les da a todos los demas;alabada sea la muerte que se yergue piadosa ante el hombre que ha cumplido su deber.
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Re: Agua y geopolítica

Mensaje por ivan_077 el Enero 15th 2015, 20:09


Is water set to become the central factor in global geopolitics?
20th November, 2012 by Peter Madden

The uneven distribution of water around the world could play a central role in global politics in years to come, says Forum for the Future's Chief Executive Peter Madden.

In 2030, will water, rather than oil, be the central factor in global geopolitics and economic success?

Will India find that over-exploitation of aquifers, a major reduction in the Himalayan melt waters, and the increasing demands from its population of 1.5 billion, bring its economic development crashing to a halt?

Will China, also facing huge water availability challenges, become the global centre for innovative environmental technologies and management systems, which it then exports around the world?

Will we see those countries with abundant fresh water – Canada, Chile, Colombia – exploit their new comparative advantage?

Experts predict that, within two decades, demand for water will be 40% higher than it is today, and more than 50% higher in the most rapidly developing countries.

Supply pressures will mean that available water acts as a magnet, with communities developing around fresh water sources. When water runs out, people will move.

Huge coastal desalination plants, water grids, and deep earth drilling (often several kilometres down) will provide temporary fixes, but will also bring new vulnerabilities and unwanted environmental side effects.

For individuals and communities, local water management will become a much bigger part of their lives. Expect to see dew and water vapour harvested, widespread use of hydroponics, and closed-loop water systems joining up waste water systems with food production and aquaculture, even in cities.

These coming shortages will hit us in the pocket, too. Water pricing will have been introduced in some countries to prioritise water use and drive its conservation. In other places, those who hold water rights are likely to squeeze the maximum economic value out of them. And there will be increased attention to the water ‘embedded’ in exports.

We can already see signals of this world to come. In Peru, fog catchers dot the deserts around Lima. In Cyprus, researchers are using concentrated solar power for a desalination scheme that will ultimately create an extra 5 million litres of water a day. And the Chinese Government recently announced that it will introduce a pricing scheme for water, where rates will rise exponentially as water consumption increases.

I think that water is bound to become more important than oil, simply because there are no alternatives. We need water for life, and we need water for food. Agriculture accounts for over 70% of global water use.

This vital resource is very unevenly distributed. China has 18% of the world’s population, yet only 8% of its freshwater. The Middle East, already suffering serious water issues, expects a doubling of population over the next 40 years. Add to this the impacts of climate change, and the severity of the situation becomes clear.

The tensions this will bring have led some to talk of ‘water wars’. Certainly, if we carry on down the same paths, desperation may well force countries into armed conflict, and also into geoengineering – seeding clouds and diverting river flows.

This is going to be a big challenge for our generation. Of course, as with any shortage, it should stimulate technological innovations, increase intelligent management and improve efficiency – and there are many examples of this in the Green Futures Special Edition ‘Water Works’. Yet we will undoubtedly need international political cooperation, too, if we are all to have access to our most precious resource.

Peter Madden is Chief Executive, Forum for the Future.
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Re: Agua y geopolítica

Mensaje por ivan_077 el Enero 15th 2015, 20:10


Series Preview: The Geopolitics of Water Scarcity
Media Center, Video
November 28, 2014 | 18:16 GMT Print Text Size
Video Transcript

David Judson: Hello, I'm David Judson, Editor-in-Chief of Stratfor. Joining me today is Rebecca Keller, our science analyst. Appropriately enough, she'll be joining me, she is joining me through the miracles of modern science, Skype. But anyhow, today's topic is a broad one: the geopolitics of water scarcity. We're using this as kind of an opportunity to explore a new innovation in the way we share informational reports with our readers. This will what we're calling an ongoing series so Rebecca will be exploring region by region country by country over the coming weeks and months, but before we get into anything very specific maybe you could just give me kind of a primer, Rebecca, on the geopolitics of water scarcity.

Rebecca Keller: So the geopolitics of water come down to the very definition of the term the geo in geopolitics. It's about geography and the constraints. So just like any other natural resource whether it be oil or even you know mountains that provide security, water is one of the advantages or disadvantages a country must operate in the constraint based analysis when looking at their political motivations, be them economic, political, social, or security wise. But unlike other commodities, water is not necessarily at the forefront of peoples' minds all the time like oil or natural gas would be, but it still comes back to the constraint. So when you look at water scarcity, or actually more appropriately water stress, you're looking at a couple of different dynamics. You're looking at short-term stressors like drought, which tend to be in the news more often, but then we'll also be looking at water stress over the long-term, which is a bigger problem with overuse and growing populations and changing economics and how that over use or limited availability of water plays into the constraints each individual country might face.

David: But I want to come back to a point that you made yesterday when we were chatting about this, that there's a uniqueness to this geopolitical issue that we don't find in other resource issues in that water scarcity, unlike as its often portrayed in the media doesn't lead to "water wars," it's an underlying issue that amplifies other kinds of social and political stresses in a political society.

Rebecca: Absolutely. Water wars is a popular phrase you'll see in the media quite a bit and that's something we tend to, not shy away from, but don't believe to be the true focus. Its an underlying constraint that faces not just arid nations like those in the Middle East, but every nation has a limited, be it a large limit or a small limit, amount of water. And how the nation uses that resource or over uses that resource will play into how big that is of a constraint to their economic, political and social development in the coming years and decades. Versus physically fighting over water, it's acting as a constraint to future growth.

David: I know that when you get into the hard pan of the analysis that we'll be rolling out you'll be exploring these issues region by region, but I'm kind of interested in hearing your early thoughts on how this plays out in different ways and in different parts of the globe. California, where you're located, certainly is going through a lot of water-based trauma at this point, and then we move on to very very different problems in places as diverse as India and Yemen and South Africa, to mention a few examples.

Rebecca: Absolutely, water stress is a global issue. Everyone, every country will experience some level water stress in the coming years, but its also a very regional issue in that each nation will be forced to deal with water stress in different ways. So more developed nations, the United States, California for example, have the capability to implement water management strategies and alternative water solutions, be it desalination or waste water management. Now those are still difficult things to implement even in developed countries, but the capability is there, whereas if you look at Yemen, which is an unstable country as far as political and social stability is concerned, there's not necessarily the government in place to implement the necessary measures to do what we would say would be — do more with less water — so be able to survive with less available water. So yes a country like Yemen is under more of a threat of almost physically running out of water in certain locations because they don't have the capability to manage the water they do have available. Whereas California, which is under an extremely severe drought right now, has more options on the table to do more with less in the coming years.

David: But I'm also intrigued in reading through your drafts of the sheer complexity that in a rural society for example when there is a water scarcity issue in rural areas the result is constraints on agriculture, which leads farmers to leave the land and move to the cities. Then the increasing urbanization creates a whole new set of water scarcity issues in the urban environment.

Rebecca: So agriculture is globally the largest consumer of water so any kind of water stress or water scarcity is going to have an impact on agriculture so in a place like India for instance where we see significant pollution affecting available water sources there and ground water over use causing the ground water levels to get lower and lower so wells have to be drilled deeper and deeper, making them more expensive we then see the movement of people into the cities or urbanization as you mentioned. And this urbanization, you still have to feed those people but they are no longer growing their own crops so its either, you know, import food or continue to produce the same amount of agriculture, which then puts more strain on those water resources. In addition you have increased municipal demand and the infrastructure may not be adequate in that it might not be able to carry the amount of volume for these increased populations in urban areas. Or it may be old or poorly maintained, in which case you're losing more water than you're getting, at times.

David: The implications are many. I'm really looking forward with you as we fold this project out. I know our readers will appreciate the effort as well. So please join us here at Stratfor to read more about the geopolitics of water.
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Re: Agua y geopolítica

Mensaje por ivan_077 el Enero 15th 2015, 20:20

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No hay raza inferior; solo hay sujetos inferiores
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Re: Agua y geopolítica

Mensaje por ivan_077 el Enero 15th 2015, 20:21


The Age Of Hydro-Diplomacy
January 14th, 2015

Via Nature.com, commentary on the potential for shared management of water as a means to achieve regional co­operation and conflict prevention:

The world is experiencing a surge of water-related crises. The eastern basin of the Aral Sea dried up completely in August, for the first time in 600 years. California has experienced an unprecedented three-year drought. Demographic changes and unsustainable economic practices are affecting the quantity and quality of the water at our disposal. Rapid urbanization is creating huge pressure on water use and infrastructure, with lasting consequences on human health and urban environments. These changes make water an increasingly scarce and expensive resource — especially for the poor, the marginalized and the vulnerable.

Demand for water is projected to grow by more than 40% by 2050. By 2025, an estimated 1.8 billion people will live in countries or regions in which water is scarce, and two-thirds of the world’s population could be living in conditions in which the supply of clean water does not meet the demand.

The picture is not entirely dark. Thanks to global mobilization behind the Millennium Development Goals, 2 billion people have benefited from access to improved water sources.

Still, let us remember that 750 million people do not have access to safe drinking water. Roughly 80% of wastewater is discharged untreated into oceans, rivers and lakes. Nearly 2 million children under the age of 5 die every year for want of clean water and decent sanitation. One billion people in 22 countries still defecate in the open. Two and a half billion people do not have adequate sewage disposal.

That is why I launched the 2013 Call to Action on Sanitation on behalf of the United Nations Secretary-General. We want to break the silence and taboo surrounding toilets and open defecation. These words must be natural elements of the diplomatic discourse on development.

In today’s world, we see how the lack of access to water can fuel conflict and even threaten peace and stability. That is why in the coming year I would like to see more attention on what I call hydro-diplomacy.

Degraded access to water increases the risk of social tensions, political instability and intensified refugee flows. Even more disturbing is when we see this resource used as a weapon of war.

I witnessed this first-hand during the Darfur conflict in Sudan. On one trip in 2007 to a village in north Darfur, we were met by a group of women chanting: “Water, water, water.” The enemy militia had poisoned their well, they said, forcing them to move to the overcrowded camps for internally displaced people.

“Lack of access to water can fuel conflict and even threaten peace and stability.”

In Iraq, ISIL has exploited access to water to expand its control over territory and to subjugate the population. This extremist group has cut off water to villages that resist its advance. It has deliberately flooded substantial areas of land, displacing thousands of civilians. In recent months, it has directed its operations to Iraqi hydroelectric dams — in particular, the Mosul dam. All of Mosul and 500,000 people in Baghdad would be in grave peril if the dam were to burst — a chilling prospect.

We have also seen tensions related to large hydroelectric projects, such as the Rogun Dam in Tajikistan and the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam. Neighbouring countries have expressed deep concerns, and energy and agricultural interests are clashing.

Still, it would be a mistake to get caught up in ‘water-war’ rhetoric. Certainly, as freshwater shortages become increasingly acute, the threat of violence over water is a real one. But we must not lose sight of the opportunities that water offers as a source of cooperation. Tensions over water resources have historically led to more collaboration than conflict. Shared water has brought states together; the 1960 Indus Water Treaty between India and Pakistan survived three wars and remains in force today.

In other words, water can and should drive cooperation and conflict resolution. More than 90% of the world’s population lives in countries that share river and lake basins, and 148 countries share at least one transboundary river basin. Almost 450 agreements on international waters were signed between 1820 and 2007. The Water Convention that was forged under the auspices of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe in 1992 is one such notable agreement.

Moreover, shared water access can create space for inter-state dialogue on points of contention that, if left unattended, may threaten regional or international peace and security. One recent example of such cooperation is among countries of the Lake Chad Basin. Chad, Cameroon, Niger and Nigeria established the Basin Commission in 1964 to manage the declining waters of Lake Chad equitably. They were later joined by other concerned states, including Libya and the Central African Republic. This year, the mandate of the commission was expanded to cover regional security challenges such as terrorism, the arms trade and cross-border insurgencies.

All this to say that hydro-diplomacy is a reality. The potential for shared management of water as a means to achieve regional co­operation and conflict prevention is vital. In 2015 and beyond, through efforts in diplomacy, economics and scientific research, we need to focus on water as a source of cooperation, rather than as a source of conflict.

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Re: Agua y geopolítica

Mensaje por ivan_077 el Enero 15th 2015, 20:22


The Thirsty Dragon: China’s Water Problems May Be Worse Than Thought
January 12th, 2015

Via The Wall Street Journal, a report on China’s dire water supply situation:

Let China sleep, for when she wakes she will shake the world, Napoleon once supposedly said. He might also have warned: Let China sleep, for when she wakes she will be really, really thirsty.

A new report published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal says China’s water shortage crisis is likely to deepen as the country continues to develop. Government efforts to try and redistribute water from relatively water-wealthy regions to more parched provinces are also likely to further exacerbate the problem, the authors say.

In an interview, co-author Dabo Guan criticized the so-called South-North Water Transfer Project — a $81 billion effort to re-route water from the south to the drier north – in particular. While the government has touted its elaborate solution to the Chinese capital’s rapidly falling water table, Mr. Guan said that by 2020 the additional water infusions brought by the project — which recently began delivering water to Beijing — would likely satisfy only 5% of the city’s overall demand.

“A metaphor is, if you have a cold, if you have a temperature, antibiotics is the cure, it’s the solution.” By contrast, the transfer project is “like paracetamol,” a pain reliever, said Mr. Guan, professor at the University of East Anglia.

According to the United Nations, though China is home to 21% of the world’s population, it contains only 7% of the world’s freshwater supplies. Particularly in its north, the country is deeply parched – so much so that the government last week said it would begin encouraging people to eat potatoes, rather than more water-intensive traditional staples such as rice and wheat, to try and conserve water.

Prior to the arrival of infusions from the south, Beijing’s per-capita water volume was just 100 cubic meters, 1.25% of the world’s average level. With the water from the south, that figure will go up to 150 cubic meters per person, according to state media reports.

The UN says a region is considered “water-stressed” when annual water supplies dip below 1,700 cubic meters per person.

In addition to the physical rerouting of China’s water flows, the report’s authors say that that numerous water-strapped provinces end up inadvertently exporting their own water by producing water-intensive goods like coal and livestock that get shipped off to other, wealthier regions. As a consequence of these so-called “virtual” water exports, Mr. Guan says, water-poor provinces find their supplies even more strained.

Xinjiang, Heilongjiang, Inner Mongolia, Guangxi and Hunan provinces are the losers, accounting for 78% of virtual water exports, the report says. Comparatively water-rich regions like Shanghai, Guangdong and Zhejiang rank among the top virtual importers. Nationwide, such virtual exports account for more than one-third of the country’s national water supply.

To address the country’s appetite for water, Mr. Guan advocates a greater push for more effective use—for example, fighting leakage in agricultural irrigation—as well as consumer cutbacks and a shift toward less water-intensive industries, such as the service industry.

Still, the report’s authors sound a pessimistic note, given the Middle Kingdom’s continuing high rates of growth: “Improving water use efficiency is key to mitigating water stress, but the efficiency gains will be largely offset by the water demand increase caused by continued economic development,” they write.

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Re: Agua y geopolítica

Mensaje por ivan_077 el Enero 15th 2015, 20:24


Water Politics In The Tigris-Euphrates Basin
January 5th, 2015

Courtesy of STRATFOR (subscription required), analysis of issues related to headwater management in the Tigris-Euphrates basin:

Controlling the headwaters of the Tigris-Euphrates river basin gives Turkey leverage over its neighbors’ water security. Turkey has talked about utilizing its water resources since the country’s founding, but only since the mid-20th century has the government actively worked to develop the necessary infrastructure needed to capitalize on its advantage and boost the country’s energy and agricultural sectors. Though Ankara is focused on the Islamic State’s recent advancements in the region, large water management projects are potential indicators of Turkey’s long-term regional role. The country hopes to maintain influence and power over its regional neighbors, but its Kurdish population on and around its southern border will act as the nation’s Achilles’ heel.

Though water management is not necessarily Ankara’s foremost concern, in the long term, water issues will contribute to conflict with neighboring states that rely on the Tigris and Euphrates. Water management will also be a source of tension for minority populations within Turkey, especially the Kurds. The massive hydropower undertaking called the Southeastern Anatolia Project demonstrates that Turkey is willing to use water infrastructure projects to manage internal minority populations. Stratfor expects this management strategy to persist and for water to be used as a political tool domestically and abroad.
Analysis

The Tigris and Euphrates river system, part of the fertile crescent of the ancient world, has historically helped make Mesopotamia a regional breadbasket. Archeological findings indicate that artificial water management of the rivers dates back to antiquity. The headwaters of both rivers begin in the mountainous Turkish region of Anatolia. The Euphrates then flows out of Turkey and into Syria, where it is joined by two major tributaries before flowing into Iraq. Roughly 90 percent of the Euphrates’ flow originates inside Turkish borders. Turkey provides 51 percent of the annual water volume that eventually combines to make up the Tigris. Tributaries within Iraq’s borders, many of which are located in the Kurdish region, contribute another 39 percent of the total flow; the remaining 10 percent comes mostly from tributaries that start in Iran.

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Like rivers in many arid regions, flow levels for the Tigris and Euphrates vary highly from season to season and year to year. Given their erratic nature, the rivers’ exact natural flow rates are sometimes debated. However, the long-term average flow of the Euphrates is around 32 billion cubic meters per year, and the Tigris’ average flow is around 52 billion cubic meters per year.

Given the wide fluctuations in flow, using the rivers for irrigation would be difficult without some artificial management. This is especially true for the Tigris. Recent droughts, poor water management and population increases throughout the region have placed significant stress on the basin’s water resources. Studies from NASA showed an alarming decline in water levels throughout the basin between 2003 and 2009. Considering the area’s heightened water stress, efforts to further utilize the available resources, especially in upstream Turkey, will likely be met with objections from the downstream nations of Syria and Iraq, as well as from the Kurdish population in Turkey and along its borders. Thus, water availability will be a geographic constraint in the unstable region and will factor into Ankara’s quest to define itself as the regional power.
The GAP Project

Construction of the Keban Dam in Anatolia began in 1966 and was completed in 1974. The project signaled the beginning of a prolific dam building period, which became the staple of Turkish engineering and which culminated in what would eventually be called the large Southeastern Anatolia Project, known by its Turkish acronym GAP. The project was the physical manifestation of research and planning conducted in the 1980s on the potential of hydropower. Originally, the project included plans for 13 irrigation and hydropower systems, including 22 dams and 19 hydropower plants on the Tigris and the Euphrates. GAP seeks to eventually provide irrigation to nearly two million hectares — an area roughly the size of Israel — throughout the region to boost the economic output of a historically poor part of Turkey.

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To date, Turkey has provided the majority of the funding for the project, a reported $24 billion of its $32 billion budget. However, Ankara recently announced the cancellation of foreign irrigation deals associated with the project. GAP has also seen numerous delays in construction and investment, in part because investors are concerned that Turkey has not given enough consideration to the regional implications of its actions. The setbacks indicate that the project may be decades away from completion.

Turkey has a natural geographic advantage as the upstream nation in the Tigris-Euphrates basin, and water management projects enable the country to leverage some of this ascendancy. One of Turkey’s geopolitical imperatives is to secure southeastern Anatolia, a capital-poor, parochial and introspective region that geographically lends itself to the development of independent cultures. The region is difficult to control, but it provides an ample buffer against possible attacks from the Asian continent. Managing the population of this region, especially the Kurdish areas, has been a constant struggle for Turkey.
Containing the Kurds

One of the major goals of GAP is to increase economic activity and social progress in southeastern Anatolia, where the majority of the population is Kurdish. On paper, the program will greatly benefit the region by increasing employment opportunities and by funding healthcare, education and infrastructure programs. However, domestic and international environmental and heritage groups have vigorously opposed many elements of the project, especially the Ilisu Dam, because of the potential for flooding that could destroy historical and archeologically important sites and possibly displace populations without appropriate compensation. Opponents of the project also question Ankara’s motivation, suggesting that GAP may be used to subvert the Kurdish identity.

While the increase in irrigated acreage resulting from the project has helped Turkish cotton production rebound to one of its highest levels since the mid-2000s, it has also increased soil salinization in the region, a development that could impact the long-term viability of the project. Furthermore, many of the economic benefits of GAP have been felt outside the region because of completed hydropower projects. (The 85 percent completion rate for hydropower projects is much higher than the 24 percent rate for irrigation projects.)

Still, it is clear that the design of some of the proposed dams along the border with Iraq and Iran is meant to make cross-border movement more difficult for Kurdish militants. Moreover, the local Kurds’ resentment toward the Turkish government over their exclusion from the project and over environmental concerns continues to sow discontent.

Turkey’s strategy to contain the restive Kurdish population’s aspirations extends beyond its borders. The Kurdish region that overlaps Turkey, Syria, Iraq and Iran will be the battleground where Ankara and Tehran fight for influence over the next several years. Turkey’s water management programs, influenced by political considerations, will add stress to relations with Iraq.


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Historically, there has been a lack of formal agreements between Iraq, Syria and Turkey, adding a level of uncertainty to future water availability in the basin. The last formal treaty regarding water between Turkey and Iraq was made in 1946 — before the majority of the dams was constructed — and required Ankara to consult Baghdad before altering the flow of the Euphrates. In the 1980s, Turkey informally agreed to ensure Syria a minimal flow of 15.8 billion cubic meters of water per year from the Euphrates in exchange for help controlling Kurdish rebels. Syria and Iraq came to an agreement in 1990 in which Iraq would receive approximately 60 percent of the 15.8 billion cubic meters per year Syria received from Turkey.

In 1990, however, the flow of the Euphrates was reduced by more than 75 percent — an effective stoppage — to fill the Ataturk Dam’s reservoir. This cutoff realized downstream nations’ worst fears, making them hesitant to concede full control of the Euphrates’ flow to Turkey. Since 1990, the 15.8 billion cubic meters per year requirement has, for the most part, been fulfilled, though Iraq complained in 2009 that Turkey had allowed the levels to fall below 9.5 billion cubic meters per year. Iraq also claims that 15.8 billion cubic meters per year is insufficient to sustain irrigation levels, although some studies suggest this amount is enough for the needs of Iraqi agriculture, especially if water from the Tigris is also used.

Turkish manipulation of Iraq’s water supply for political gains will contribute to the broader regional dynamic. Tension will likely rise between Baghdad and Ankara over the long term as Iraq’s agricultural sector continues to decline and a rising population puts pressure on the Iraqi government. Turkey’s growing need for energy, which will probably be satisfied in part by the Kurdish autonomous region of Iraq, will enable Baghdad to bargain with Ankara over water rights. Maintaining oil exports will be essential to Baghdad’s ability to hold Iraq together and to negotiate effectively with its neighbors. Water availability is unlikely to impact Iraq’s ability to produce and export oil because operators are already exploring low-water and saltwater options for extraction. Even though Iraq will face significant challenges in the years ahead, substantial oil revenues will underpin the central government in Baghdad, likely preventing the country from completely fragmenting along sectarian lines.

In the short-term, as Turkey is forced to confront the issues the Islamic State creates on its borders while also attempting to assert itself as the regional power, water will not necessarily be Ankara’s foremost concern. But GAP will likely continue to be one of the more subtle tools Turkey uses to assert its power in the region, to manage its Kurdish population and to shape Syria’s future.
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No hay raza inferior; solo hay sujetos inferiores
Bendita se la muerte, porque a nadie le concede lo que no les da a todos los demas;alabada sea la muerte que se yergue piadosa ante el hombre que ha cumplido su deber.
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Re: Agua y geopolítica

Mensaje por ivan_077 el Enero 15th 2015, 20:35


Will An Ethiopia Dam Turn Lake Turkana Into ‘Endless Battlefield’?
January 13th, 2015
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Via The Guardian, a report on the potential impact of Ethiopia’s Gibe III dam on Kenyans living near world’s largest desert lake, so of whom predict conflict, hunger and cultural devastation when hydroelectric project is completed:

An armed Turkana man walks towards the shores of Lake Turkana near a temporary fishing camp some kilometres from Todonyang near the Kenya-Ethiopia border in northwestern Kenya October 12, 2013. The Turkana are traditionally nomadic pastoralists, but they have seen the pasture that they need to feed their herds suffer from recurring droughts and many have turned to fishing. However, Lake Turkana is overfished, and scarcity of food and pastureland is fuelling long-standing conflict with Ethiopian indigenous Dhaasanac, who have seen grazing grounds squeezed by large-scale government agricultural schemes in southern Ethiopia.

People living near Lake Turkana in northern Kenya have little understanding that the fresh water essential to their development is likely to dry up when a huge hydoelectric dam in neighbouring Ethiopia is completed.

Fishermen, farmers, teachers and others living near the world’s largest desert lake say Turkana’s volume has reduced significantly over the past 30 years because of higher temperatures and changing weather patterns.

But few of the 100 people interviewed by a Kenyan researcher for International Rivers watchdog said they had been consulted or warned what could happen when the reservoir of the Gibe III dam, one of Africa’s largest hydropower projects, is completely filled in about three years’ time. The $1.8bn construction project, which is 90% complete, will start limited power generation in June.

The downstream impact of the dam is hotly contested. Some hydrologists have predicted that Ethiopia’s expansion of water-intensive sugar and cotton plantations on the Omo river, which the Gibe 111 dam allows, could reduce flow to Lake Turkana by up to 70%. This would kill ecosystems and greatly reduce the water level of the lake.

This, says International Rivers, could make the difference between marginal livelihoods and famine for the tens of thousands of already vulnerable people who depend on the lake for their livelihoods.

When told of the possible impact of the project, ethnic groups and communities near the lake predicted widespread conflict, hunger and cultural devastation. “If the Gibe III dam is constructed, the lake will dry up and this will lead to desertification and there will be depletion of resources: there will be no fish, no farming, and low humidity [and less rain]. If that is the case, the community will be finished,” said Sylvester Ekariman, chairman of the council of elders in Kakalel pastoral village.
A far-away view of the controversial Gibe III dam under construction in Ethiopia s Omo valley and surrounding hills, May 2012. The government says the Gibe III dam will boost development, give access to power for many Ethiopians -- about half of the population -- currently living without it. But critics say Ethiopia must also consider the environmental and social impact it will have on some 500,000 people living downstream and at Lake Turkana in neighbouring Kenya, who rely on the river for their livelihood.

A far-away view of the Gibe III dam under construction in Ethiopia s Omo valley and surrounding hills.

Currently, the lake, which could split into two if incoming water is restricted, helps to prevent conflict between communities in Ethiopia and Kenya, and locally between the Turkanas and the Rendille ethnic groups, who live on opposite sides of the lake. If the lake shrinks, conflict is much more likely, says the report.

“This place will turn into an endless, uncontrollable battlefield,” said Joseph Atach, an assistant chief at Kanamkuny village.

Helen Alogita, a seed seller, told researcher Narissa Allibhai that she feared the people living on the other side of the lake. “They will come and kill us and that will bring about enmity among us as we turn on each other due to hunger. Find the person [building the dam] and ask them where they expect our communities to go? Where are our Kenyan leaders? If famine and hunger will make us die of starvation, where will they get votes from?”

Fisherman Dennis Epem said: “When the lake goes back, our enemies, which are the people of Ethiopia, will be reaching here. They have weapons, but we don’t have weapons. How will we defend ourselves when the people of Ethiopia cross? This lake is our security.”

Many of the people interviewed in the 14 communities said they were angry that an Ethiopian dam should affect Kenyans. “Not a single country [should] harm the other one by taking its waters without discussing with the other countries, because water is life. It should not be decided by one country. Who is funding these Gibes? They should withdraw their assistance or the loans they are giving,” the researcher was told.
Children sitting on the Omo River bank which is slightly cracked due to the lowering of water level. Gibe III Dam, Africa's Tallest Dam with installed capacity of 1870 MW which is under construction, is said to impact 500,000 Ethiopians and Kenyans relying their lives on Omo River and Lake Turkana. The lowering of water level and the change of water salinity may especially impact aboriginal tribes who already live in severe drought and poverty, and may end the fragile peace between tribes

Children sitting on the Omo river bank, which is cracked due to falling water levels.

“Awareness of the dam’s impacts and development process is extremely low,” said Allibhai. “A majority of interviewees were extremely uninformed. Any consultations with local communities were either minimal or non-existent. People in the villages had either heard about the dam only through local NGO Friends of Lake Turkana’s awareness-raising or through rumours; misinformation was rampant.

“Those in the towns were slightly more informed, especially the few with access to the internet – but even so, not one interviewee was sure of the details of the upstream developments, agreements and progress,” she said.

“All community members are opposed to the dam and irrigated plantations, as it will deprive them of their livelihoods and lead to increased famine, conflict and death. Their messages to the Kenyan and Ethiopian governments and the international community reflect their despair, and feelings of helplessness, anger and betrayal.”

Many older people said the developments in Ethiopia could tip the region into a crisis because climate change had made them more vulnerable. The lake was already much smaller than it was 30 years ago and villages like Impressa Beach, Lokitoenyala and Nachukui used to be under water, said locals. Rains are unpredictable and temperatures and wind have increased.

“These water grabs will disrupt fisheries and destroy other ecosystems upon which local people depend,” said Lori Pottinger, International Rivers’ Africa campaigner. “Local people have not been consulted about the project nor informed about its impacts on their lives.”

Both the Kenyan and Ethiopian governments have strongly backed the dam, which they maintain will increase development by providing more electricity.

The World Bank, which has been strongly criticised for funding developments that force evictions, is supporting the transmission line from the dam to Kenyan cities.

The Ethiopian government this week strongly rejected claims that the dam would harm Lake Turkana. A spokeswoman said: “The dam will provide a regular flow of water to Lake Turkana, which gives the possibility of providing a water supply throughout the year, whereas the lake is currently short of water in the dry season. The regular flow of water will also improve the aquatic life of Lake Turkana, providing a better livelihood for people living round the lake.

“The project … is instrumental in forging regional integration – the Gibe III dam will have a role in the realisation of close economic cooperation between Ethiopia, Kenya and the countries beyond. Kenya [will] obtain more than 300MW of electricity from Ethiopia.

“Campaigners are consciously trying to distort all these positive developments … in order to incite misunderstanding between the fraternal countries of Ethiopia and Kenya.” she said.

The Kenyan government was invited to respond to the report but has so far declined.

Suggestions for action by the communities ranged from using force to stop the dam, persuading the the Kenyan government to stand up for the people of Turkana and Marsabit, pressing for donors to withdraw funding and requesting compensation.

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"No hay mas diferencia entre los hombres que el vicio o la virtud" Jose Maria Morelos y Pavon.

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Re: Agua y geopolítica

Mensaje por ivan_077 el Enero 15th 2015, 20:36


The Thirsty Dragon: Diverting The Indus To Xinjiang
January 11th, 2015

Via Claude Arpi, some interesting commentary on a possible Chinese plan to divert the Indus river towards Xinjiang:

On Christmas Day, The New York Times reported: “Within a few days, water that has traveled more than 800 miles for two weeks in one of the world’s most ambitious, and controversial, engineering projects is expected to begin flowing through Beijing faucets.”

The objective of the scheme is to bring water from upper reaches of the Han River, a tributary of the Yangtze, through the central route of the South-to-North Water Diversion project, the second of three routes planned to transfer water from China’s wet south to the dry north. Once fully functional, the Central Diversion is expected to provide a third of the capital’s water needs.

The project is estimated at 80 billion U.S. dollars, says Xinhua, adding: “The completion of the water scheme marked major progress in the nation’s enormous south-to-north water diversion project, the largest of its kind in the world.”

The official news agency boasts: “It is another engineering achievement by the Chinese,” quoting the Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal, the world’s longest man-made river, opened in the 13th century for transporting grain.

The pro and the cons of the present project will continue to be debated in the months and years to come; in the meanwhile, some researchers in China have thought of another smaller ‘pilot’ project: to divert the Indus river towards Xinjiang. A detailed report on the scheme is posted by a blogger on the website ScienceNet.cn.

Beijing will argue that this new project is merely the product of the fertile brain of some freelance scientists, and that it has ‘nothing to do with the government’.

Since January 2007, more than 5,000 scientists and graduate students have posted their papers on ScienceNet. The editorial board of ScienceNet says that it has been ranking first among Chinese science websites.

The blogger quotes Chinese researchers who argue that the other planned ‘diversions’ require extremely complicated construction plans, large investments, long building periods and face a lot of engineering problems due to the complexity of the issues involved (I would add, and ‘displacing millions of people’). It makes these projects difficult to undertake, while a small-scale, with low investment and a quickly realizable scheme, could be an ideal pilot project.

The ‘researchers’ propose to add a South Western segment to the Western Diversion Route (not yet started), which is the third part of the South-to-North Water Diversion project. It would involve the diversion of the waters from the Indus river in Western Tibet (before it enters Ladakh) towards the Tarim Basin in Xinjiang.

According to the authors, the scheme would meet the requirements of a ‘pilot’ scheme.

In a summary, the ‘scientists’ explain that the water diversion project referred to in their paper could be called “the South Western section of Western Route Project”; water could be taken from the Tibetan Plateau in the West and brought by gravity to the Tarim Basin in Xinjiang. The text describes the preliminary survey of the South Western part of the Western Route Project. The size of the diversion program and a brief description of China’s northwest after the transfer of the Indus’ water, are given. The main conclusion is that the diversion will help maintaining long-term stability in Xinjiang. The paper explains why and suggests deepening the research before an early implementation of the South Western section.

According to the ‘researchers’, the diversion of the Indus could bring ten benefits to China:

It could increase the total amount of water resources in the Tarim Basin, which is located in the hinterland of Taklimakan Desert and suffers from important sand dune mobility. In this highly arid region, which receives low precipitations, water is extremely valuable
The diversion could increase the local hydropower capacity. Water would flow from the high Qinghai-Tibet plateau, at an elevation of over 3,000 [in fact 4,000] meters and at the receiving end, water would be at only 1,500 meters above sea level.
Once this section is completed, the water could create an oasis in the desert. The Western section would transform an entire region into an oasis; it would further bring a great return on the investment.
Once the project is fully implemented, the total amount of water resources locally available could greatly increase; it could provide a substantial increase in the amount of hydroelectric power; the desert could become an oasis, it could improve the ecological environment, which in turn could promote local economic development of the region and the living standards of the local people.
According to some scientific hypotheses, the water brought by the diversion could also increase precipitations in the region.
The research says that the new oasis could in turn ‘curb global warming’ [sic]. If the global warming argument is indeed correct, say the ‘scientists’, the South Western section could increase the rainfall in China; this countermeasure could help curb global warming for the entire humanity; this is why the diversion project must be able to get the global support and backing of most countries [what about India?]. China can then get a substantial increase in the local precipitation; the desert in northwest [Xinjiang] would disappear; the desert would become an oasis which would be able to grow food and have power plants; humans would be able to reduce the need for fossil fuels; after additional diversion oasis would absorb large amounts of greenhouse gases each year, thus it would achieve the goal of curbing global warming.

What an argument! But that is not all:

It could contribute to China’s food and energy security. After the diversion, the desert turned-oasis could increase the country’s arable land for China to contribute to the world food security.
The western development could make a significant contribution by reducing regional disparities. China’s population distribution is unbalanced; the development gap between China and western regions and other regions is too large; it has been extremely detrimental to the country’s development.

And now the cherry on the cake:

The diversion could strengthen China’s actual control of Aksai Chin, and help to resolve the territorial dispute. Sino-Indian border has not been formally delimited in the Aksai Chin and Pangong Lake areas; there are some territorial disputes [with India]. The water diversion project, through Aksai Chin, could help the actual control of this region; the implementation of the project could also help to resolve the territorial dispute [with India].
Finally, the project could promote national unity and maintain long-term stability of Xinjiang. This, according to the authors, is the main benefit of the South Western section: the long-term stability of Xinjiang.

This ‘easy’ pilot project does not, of course, take into account what the neighbours (including China’s all-weather friend, Pakistan) would have to say.

That may not make the pilot project so simple after all!

The question is, while Beijing is very quick to remove internet content which contests its rule, why is such a crazy and highly objectionable project allowed to be posted on a semi-governmental website?

Similarly, the website of the Yellow River Conservancy Commission of China’s Ministry of Water Resources has a 50-page report on the diversion of the Brahmaputra, and though Beijing denies any bad intention, the project remains on the ‘official’ website.
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Bendita se la muerte, porque a nadie le concede lo que no les da a todos los demas;alabada sea la muerte que se yergue piadosa ante el hombre que ha cumplido su deber.
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Re: Agua y geopolítica

Mensaje por ivan_077 el Enero 15th 2015, 20:39


World Economic Forum Ranks Water Crises as Top Global Risk
January 15th, 2015
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Courtesy of Circle of Blue, a report on a recent WEF ranking of water as the top global risk:
Delhi India water sanitation World Economic Forum global risks report

Though much of India is water-rich, the country hasn’t invested nearly enough in public water supply, transport, or treatment. Millions of India’s urban residents, including this man in New Delhi, draw their water from hand pumps or from water trucks.

More than nuclear weapons or a global disease pandemic, impairments to water supplies and punishing cycles of flood, drought, and water pollution are now viewed by heads of state, nonprofit leaders, and chief executives as the most serious threat to business and society.

For the first time, water crises took the top spot in the World Economic Forum’s tenth global risk report, an annual survey of nearly 900 leaders in politics, business, and civic life about the world’s most critical issues. Water ranked third a year ago.

The report measured 28 risks on two dimensions: the likelihood of occurring within 10 years, and impact, which is a measure of devastation. Water ranked eighth for likelihood and first for impact. It was one of four risks — along with interstate conflict, the failure to adapt to climate change, and chronic unemployment — that were deemed highly likely and highly devastating.
“We didn’t realize until recently how much our economy and society relied on hydrologic stability.”

–Bob Sandford, chair
Canadian Partnership Initiative

Water’s ascent reflects a remarkable shift in thinking among the members of the World Economic Forum, the Geneva-based think tank known for its yearly meeting in the Swiss Alps that draws the elite of wealth, business savvy, and political power. Water’s top ranking also reflects the growing recognition among world leaders that diminishing supplies of reliable, clean water, if not well managed, will be a significant impediment to health and wealth for the poor and for the richest economies and largest cities.

Residents of California (GDP $US 2 trillion) and Sao Paulo (population 12 million) felt the first tremors of such disruptions during dreadful droughts in 2014. The 2.5 billion people without toilet facilities that protect them from disease and personal danger feel the stress every day.

“So much of life is affected by what happens with water,” said Bob Sandford, chair of the Canadian Partnership Initiative, which helps governments connect the science of water with public policy. “We didn’t realize until recently how much our economy and society relied on hydrologic stability.”
Water Rises in the Ranks

A decade ago, the global risks report was dominated by financial worries and macroeconomic concerns: the pace of China’s growth, sharp swings in stock and bond prices, and roller-coaster oil markets. Water merited little attention and climate change, pushed aside as a “still emerging” threat, was the only risk out of 120 in the 2006 report that was deemed too distant for a rigorous statistical analysis.


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Water crises ranked as the top risk for impact, according to the World Economic Forum’s survey of nearly 900 global leaders in business, academia, and government.

Today, the script is flipped. Respondents to the 2015 survey viewed social and environmental risks as the gravest threats to the planet’s 7 billion people. Experts offered several explanations for the new direction.

Howard Kunreuther, a professor at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania who served as an academic advisor in the development of the report, said that the large number of weather disasters in the last decade has captured the attention of government officials. Floods in Pakistan’s Indus River Basin in 2010, for instance, displaced 20 million people, caused at least $US 43 billion in economic damages, and killed 2,000 people.

“Events that used to be extreme are more likely today,” Kunreuther told Circle of Blue. The risk increases as global temperatures rise, with climate change expected to cut water availability in Southern Europe, the Middle East, North Africa, and the American Southwest while also increasing the number of severe rainstorms. Engulfing rains or deep droughts could slash crop yields by 25 percent by mid-century, according to worst-case projections cited by the United Nations climate panel.

A second factor is also responsible for water’s rise in the risk rankings, argued Giulio Boccaletti, global director for water at the Nature Conservancy and a member of the World Economic Forum’s global agenda council on water. An evolution in the balance of world power may explain a greater emphasis on water, he said.

“The types of countries that are more vulnerable to water crises are becoming more important in global politics as the center of gravity moves from the United States and Europe to China and India,” Boccaletti told Circle of Blue.

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Most of China’s fresh water is in its wet south. Much of its energy production, urban development, and agriculture is in the dry north. One solution to the geographical mismatch, in a nation that has been building immense public works projects for centuries, is to transport was from the south to the north. The $US 81 billion South-North Water Transfer Project is in operation. The middle canal, under construction in 2010, opened late in 2014.

In China and India, there is a much closer connection between infrastructure development, water resources, and economic growth, he added. Home to more than one-third of the world’s people, the two countries have severe mismatches between water availability and water demands. Both nations rely on unsustainable supplies of groundwater in their prime food-growing regions, suffer from polluted rivers, and have hydropower ambitions that can be wrecked by Mother Nature. As many as 30,000 people were killed and 10 hydropower stations were destroyed in a vicious June 2013 flood in Uttarakhand, an Indian state at the foot of the Himalayas.
A Broader Look at Water

Water rose as a global priority in the 2015 report, and it also acquired a new designation. The report reclassified water from an environmental risk to a societal risk, an acknowledgment that nearly all human activity — from growing wheat and catching fish, to preventing child-killing bacterial diseases and powering industries and communities — has water at its base.

“That’s big,” said Sandford about the reclassification. “I agree with the change. Water is environmental but it transcends that category. People are being devastated by these events of flood and drought. How you manage these impacts becomes an important political question.”
California drought water supply Central Valley World Economic Forum global risks report

California is in the fourth year of a dire drought that is the worst in its recorded history. The dry weather is prompting policy changes and infrastructure investments in water conservation and transport, and testing a modern democracy’s capacity to cope with an ecological emergency.

The world is not doing enough, the report asserts. Though the problems of floods, drought, and inadequate water supplies that were projected more than two decades ago have come true, little is being done to address them effectively. Leaders are especially ill-prepared for widespread social instability, the risk perceived to be the most interconnected, according to the report. Those connections were most visible in the Arab Spring uprisings, which began in 2010 with turmoil in the public square over food prices and resulted in the toppling of governments. A 12-year drought in Australia’s Murray-Darling Basin, which crippled the largest rice industry in the southern hemisphere, contributed to shortages of grain and escalating food prices that year.

Not all agree with the assessment that the response is lagging. The report is too pessimistic in its assertion that little progress has been made to address water issues, Boccaletti said, pointing out the report’s discussion of Australia’s Murray-Darling Basin as one example of an effective solution.

The Murray-Darling is Australia’s most important river basin, providing water for two million people and 40 percent of the country’s agriculture. The long drought, which ended late in the 2000s, forced water managers to completely rework the system for allocating water to farmers, cities, and ecosystems. Less water would be available for farmers and more would be set aside to maintain the health of the river. What was needed was a credible idea of how much water would be available in the future.

Out of the crisis came the world’s most advanced system for analyzing the water flows in a river basin. Leaders committed money and made politically difficult decisions to throw out longstanding management practices in favor of decisions based on data and scientific merit.

The global risks report, Boccaletti said, is evidence that leaders elsewhere may be at a similar stage – ready to consider seriously the idea of water.

“What this report says is that leaders now recognize that they need to take care of water,” Boccaletti said. “It’s an opening to engage. We’re not necessarily ready to solve all problems. But politically we’re at a stage to have a conversation about sustainable development, to have a discussion about water and development.”

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Arabian Gulf nations, among the largest per capita consumers of fresh water in the world, burn huge quantities of oil and natural gas to desalinate sea water for drinking water. Saudia Arabia is using so much oil to secure its economy, including desalinating seawater, that several studies predict it will cease to be an oil exporting nation by 2028. Here, a desalination plant operates outside of Doha, the capital of Qatar.
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"No hay mas diferencia entre los hombres que el vicio o la virtud" Jose Maria Morelos y Pavon.

No hay raza inferior; solo hay sujetos inferiores
Bendita se la muerte, porque a nadie le concede lo que no les da a todos los demas;alabada sea la muerte que se yergue piadosa ante el hombre que ha cumplido su deber.
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Re: Agua y geopolítica

Mensaje por ivan_077 el Febrero 3rd 2015, 22:33


Inconscientes de crisis por agua.- ONU

Expertos en desarrollo de todo el mundo han estado cada vez más preocupados sobre la seguridad del agua en los últimos años. Foto: Reuters
Expertos en desarrollo de todo el mundo han estado cada vez más preocupados sobre la seguridad del agua en los últimos años. Foto: Reuters
Expertos en desarrollo de todo el mundo han estado cada vez más preocupados sobre la seguridad del agua en los últimos años. Foto: Reuters

Reuters
Nueva Delhi, India (03 febrero 2015).-
Notas Relacionadas
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2015, año clave contra cambio climático
La escasez de agua podría llevar a un conflicto entre comunidades y países debido a que el mundo aún no es plenamente consciente de la crisis de agua que muchas naciones enfrentan como resultado del cambio climático, advirtió el director del panel de científicos del clima de la ONU.

El último reporte del Panel Intergubernamental sobre Cambio Climático (IPCC) de Naciones Unidas prevé un aumento en la temperatura global de entre 0.3 y 4.8 grados Celsius para fines del siglo 2I.

Países como India son proclives a ser afectados duramente por el calentamiento global, lo que acarreará un clima más incierto, como las sequías que afectarán la producción agrícola y la seguridad alimenticia.

"Desafortunadamente, el mundo no ha despertado realmente a la realidad de lo que vamos a enfrentar en términos de crisis en lo que respecta al agua", indicó Rajendra Pachauri, director del IPCC, a los participantes de una conferencia sobre seguridad del agua.

"Si miras los productos agrícolas, si miras la proteína animal (...) son altamente intensivas en agua. Al mismo tiempo, por el lado del suministro, van a haber muchas limitaciones. Primero porque van a producirse cambios profundos en el ciclo del agua debido al cambio climático", aseveró.

Expertos en desarrollo de todo el mundo han estado cada vez más preocupados sobre la seguridad del agua en los últimos años.

Inundaciones y sequías más frecuentes causadas por el cambio climático, contaminación de los ríos y lagos, urbanización, extracción excesiva de agua subterránea y una población en crecimiento significa que muchos países enfrentan una grave escasez del líquido.

Además, la demanda de más electricidad de países como India para alimentar su crecimiento económico ha resultado en la necesidad de emplear más agua para represas hidroeléctricas y plantas nucleares.

Los meses secos de junio y julio, durante los cuales hay cortes de electricidad y escasez de agua frecuentes, ofrecen un panorama de la crisis de agua en ese país.

Hospitales en Nueva Delhi cancelaron las cirugías en un momento del 2013 por carecer de agua para esterilizar los instrumentos, limpiar quirófanos y para que el personal se lave las manos.

Centros comerciales que venden marcas de lujo se vieron forzados a apagar aires acondicionados y cerrar baños.

Pachauri señaló que era necesario introducir tecnología para ayudar a emplear el agua más eficientemente, particularmente en la agricultura donde hay mucho desperdicio.

"Naturalmente esto (la crisis del agua) también va a provocar tensiones, probablemente algún conflicto entre grupos y estados ribereños", agregó.

India está en el centro de disputas por el agua con sus vecinos del este y el oeste -Bangladesh y Pakistán-, quienes acusan a Nueva Delhi de monopolizar los flujos del agua.



Hora de publicación: 18:11 hrs
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"No hay mas diferencia entre los hombres que el vicio o la virtud" Jose Maria Morelos y Pavon.

No hay raza inferior; solo hay sujetos inferiores
Bendita se la muerte, porque a nadie le concede lo que no les da a todos los demas;alabada sea la muerte que se yergue piadosa ante el hombre que ha cumplido su deber.
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