Free Newsletters - Space - Defense - Environment - Energy - Solar - Nuclear
..
. Earth Science News .




WATER WORLD
Water crisis brings threats of Mideast war, terrorism: report
by Staff Writers
Beirut, Lebanon (UPI) Feb 14, 2013


disclaimer: image is for illustration purposes only

Satellite data released by the University of California, Irvine, shows the world's water supply is disappearing fast because of agricultural demand, an expanding population, energy production and climate change, with the Middle East, Africa and Asia in particular facing crisis in the next few years.

Another study, this time from the Pacific Institute of Oakland, Calif., which monitors global water and security issues, reports a fourfold increase in violent confrontations over water in the last 10 years.

Together, these studies present an extremely bleak picture of how vast areas of the planet, from California to the Asian Steppe, are heading for severe, and probably deadly, water shortages.

"I think the risk of conflicts over water is growing -- not shrinking -- because of bad management and, ultimately, because of the impact of climate change," Pacific Institute director and co-founder Peter Gleick told the British newspaper the Guardian.

The data obtained by the University of California was downloaded Jan. 17 from two gravity-sensing Grace satellites, two craft lofted into space from Russia's Plesetsk Cosmodrome March 17, 2002, as part of the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment jointly run by the U.S. National Aeronautical and Space administration and the German Aerospace Center.

These satellites are considered cutting-edge tools in studying Earth's oceans, geology and climate and reputedly have produced maps 1,000 times more accurate than all previous maps.

James Famiglietti, a hydrologist at the University of California, notes that on the satellite images the biggest water losses appeared as red hotspots.

"Almost all of those correspond to major aquifers of the world," he said in the report. "What Grace shows us is that groundwater depletion is happening at a very rapid rate in almost all of the major aquifers in the arid and semi-arid parts of the world."

The water losses are immense. According to Grace mission data, published by the Guardian, in seven years starting in 2003, parts of Syria, Turkey, Iraq and Iran along the Euphrates and Tigris Rivers lost 144 cubic kilometers (34.5 cubic miles) of fresh water.

Iran is facing a shortage so severe, the government is making contingency plans for rationing in the greater Tehran area, which has a population of about 22 million.

Experts blame climate change, wasteful irrigation practices and a depletion of groundwater as the key factors behind the worsening shortages.

An Iranian dam construction program is seen as one major cause, a recurring element in the growing water shortage across the region.

Egypt's currently is at odds with Ethiopia over its construction of a $4.2 billion, 6,000-megawatt hydroelectric dam on the Blue Nile, a major tributary of the Nile, that Cairo claims will reduce the water flow that is Egypt's lifeline by 20 percent.

Addis Ababa refuses to abandon the Grand Renaissance Dam, which it views as vital to Ethiopia's national security.

Cairo has vowed to protect its "historical rights" to the lion's share of the Nile water, enshrined in British colonial-era agreements, "at any cost."

Water shortages in the United Arab Emirates are so severe the Persian Gulf federation is reported using non-conventional resources, such as desalination, treated wastewater and even cloud-seeding, to help it through the unfolding crisis.

"For us, water is now more important than oil," Gen. Sheik Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan, the Emirati crown prince, told a recent international water conference in Abu Dhabi.

Jordan, which has the region's third lowest water reserves, reported last week its already limited water resources are being strained to the limit by the influx of 600,000 refugees from the Syrian civil war.

As the resource-poor Hashemite kingdom, which in the past has clashed with Israel over water, undergoes power cuts because of water shortages, Prince Hassan, uncle of King Abdullah II, warned a war over water and energy could be bloodier than the political upheavals sweeping the Arab world.

The University of California's Famiglietti warned time is running out for concerted action to head off the crisis.

"We're standing on a cliff looking over the edge and we have to decide what to do," he observed.

"Are we just going to plunge into this next epic drought and tremendous, never-before-seen rates of groundwater depletion, or are we going to buckle down and start thinking of managing critical reserve for the long term? We're standing on a precipice here."

.


Related Links
Water News - Science, Technology and Politics






Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News





WATER WORLD
Israelis fume over EU parliament president 's water remark
Jerusalem (AFP) Feb 13, 2014
Israeli newspapers bristled Thursday after the European Parliament president criticised the Gaza Strip blockade and suggested that Israelis received four times more water than Palestinians. The spat erupted Wednesday after the far-right Jewish Home party stormed out of parliament in protest during a speech by Martin Schulz, and it made the front pages of Israel's main newspapers. Most c ... read more


WATER WORLD
British princes help out as storm claims two lives

165,000 without power in storm-battered Ireland

Beckham gives cheer in Philippines typhoon zone

Philippines vows to build back better 100 days after typhoon

WATER WORLD
Hand-held scanner used to make 3-D maps of crime scenes

Physicists produce a potentially revolutionary material

It's alive! Bacteria-filled liquid crystals could improve biosensing

Carbon dioxide from exhaust fumes used to make new chemicals

WATER WORLD
Fiji leader invites climate-hit Kiribati residents to relocate

Human resource needs putting deep-water ecosystems in peril

Water crisis brings threats of Mideast war, terrorism: report

Meeting the eye-witnesses of ocean change

WATER WORLD
Arctic biodiversity under serious threat from climate change according to new report

NOAA researcher says Arctic marine mammals are ecosystem sentinels

US to appoint Arctic envoy

Ice age's arctic tundra lush with wildflowers for woolly mammoths

WATER WORLD
EU plans more tests for horsemeat in food

Making biodiverse agriculture part of a food-secure future

Worldwide study finds that fertilizer destabilizes grasslands

Top-down and bottom-up approach needed to conserve potato agrobiodiversity

WATER WORLD
Volcanoes, including Mt. Hood, can go from dormant to active quickly

Indonesia orders 200,000 to evacuate as volcano erupts

Britain gets respite from flooding crisis

Britain gets respite from flooding crisis

WATER WORLD
Africans get a kick out of Shaolin kung fu

Poaching threatens savannah ecosystems

DRC president declares amnesty for former M23 rebels

French defence chief urges crackdown on C.Africa militias

WATER WORLD
Mobile apps shake up world of dating

For new study, 100 people commit their bodies to science

Population bomb may be defused, but research reveals ticking household bomb

The genetic origins of high-altitude adaptations in Tibetans




The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement All images and articles appearing on Space Media Network have been edited or digitally altered in some way. Any requests to remove copyright material will be acted upon in a timely and appropriate manner. Any attempt to extort money from Space Media Network will be ignored and reported to Australian Law Enforcement Agencies as a potential case of financial fraud involving the use of a telephonic carriage device or postal service.