Swiss energy companies are determined to turn the country into a 'battery for Europe'. Vast investments are made in big-scale water power projects. But it is not certain they will eventually pay off.
José Geraldo Matos fondly recalls the massive traíras (Hoplias sp), carnivorous freshwater fish found in the lagoons and rivers of Brazil, that he used to catch in the Dos Cochos River just a few metres from his house.
“With more than 60 percent of the world projected to be urban by 2030 why not prepare for it and build cities that include biodiversity preservation into planning?” asks Kobie Brand of ICLEI Local Governments for Sustainability in Cape Town, South Africa.
With the rains over Gopalganj district intensifying each year and much of Baikantapur village permanently waterlogged, Bijoy Kumar Sen had little choice but to abandon traditional rice farming and grow vegetables on bairas – floating islands built of straw and aquatic plants.
Gafsa region in the south of Tunisia was once an oasis; today the phosphate industry has plunged it into a water crisis.
Thailand’s flood-management blueprint received a jolt when the dykes in Sukhothai were breached by the rain-swollen Yom river last week, submerging large stretches of the former royal capital.
Water scarcity is fuelling deadly inter-ethnic wars that continue to claim lives in Kenya, according to government officials. And if nothing is done to educate communities on how to conserve the valuable resource, the situation will escalate, governance experts and environmentalists warn.
Despite the desperate lack of access to water for domestic use in Mwene Ditu, in the central Democratic Republic of Congo, Dieudonné Ilunga spent a good part of July blocking up residents' wells.
The Nepali government is receiving significant national and international blowback for a draft ordinance that rights groups, including ones in the United States, say would allow for a widespread amnesty for some accused of human rights and other abuses perpetrated during Nepal's decade-long civil war.
Jowhar Ahmed, an air-conditioner dealer in Srinagar, is pleased at a spurt in business this summer caused by temperatures soaring over 35 degrees Celsius - unusual in this alpine valley ringed by snow-capped mountains.
Last May the European Commission reported that scores of infrastructure projects in the Gaza Strip, financed mostly by the European Union, have been damaged or destroyed, wittingly or unwittingly, by Israeli military forces in the ongoing conflict in the Palestinian Occupied Territories.
When the international community was struggling to ward off a potential decline in development aid in early 2000, it came up with a novel idea: a proposal for "new and innovative sources of financing", including a tax on airline tickets and a levy on foreign exchange transactions.
As the world faces possible water scarcities in the next two to three decades, the U.S. intelligence community has already portrayed a grim scenario for the foreseeable future: ethnic conflicts, regional tensions, political instability and even mass killings.
Paradoxically, the water we "eat" is likely to become one of the growing new dangers to millions of the world’s thirsty, hungering for this finite natural resource.
Farmers in this fertile central district of south Nepal are convinced that an intense drought between May and early July that destroyed their maize crops is the result of climate change.