water

Greek Privatisation of Key Sectors Meets Strong Opposition

Plans by the Greek government to sell companies that handle the key resources of energy and water face serious obstacles and its policy to offer investors exceptional privileges in an effort to boost interest in privatisation is coming under strong pressure.

Piping the Waters of Southern Chile to the Thirsty North

Three private sector initiatives are aimed at carrying water from the rivers in southern Chile to the arid north of the country by ship or through underwater or underground pipelines. The objective is to slake the thirst of the mining industry of this country, the world’s largest producer of copper.

Water, Water, Everywhere: To Green our Deserts

Providing water for our still growing human population is reaching crisis levels. Water is vital for agriculture, energy production and industrial processes worldwide. Floods and droughts in Asia, Latin America, Europe and the United States accompanied unprecedented typhoons and winter storms. While none could be linked directly to climate change, the debate surfaced. Mainstream media started covering these issues more broadly.

Sri Lanka Feels the Heat

Sri Lanka is heading into a major crisis under extreme heat, as the rains stay away. Fears are growing of power cuts and interruption to the water supply because reservoir levels are running scarily low.

A Nation Chewing Itself to Death

The Yemeni capital of Sanaa is reputed to be over 2,500 years old, making it one of the oldest continually inhabited cities in the world. But it is living on borrowed time.

Villagers Become ‘Water Scavengers’

For the last 13 years, Trynos Mbweku, the headman of Mwenezi district in southeastern Zimbabwe, has had to use a cart to fetch water from the only remaining borehole in his area, which lies some 10 kilometres from his home.

Water Shortage Hits Pacific Women

The Solomon Islands, a developing island nation in the south-west Pacific Islands, has one of the highest urbanisation rates in the region, and the basic service infrastructure is struggling to cater for the influx of people from the provinces to the capital, Honiara. Thirty-five percent of the city’s population, who live in informal settlements, are facing the health consequences of a dire shortage of clean water and sanitation.

Peace and Dead Sea at a New Low

Two of the three main objectives of the Red Sea-Dead Sea canal project grapple with how to “save the Dead Sea” and “build a symbol of peace in the region.” With Israeli-Palestinians relations and the Dead Sea at an all time low, questions arise whether the ‘Red-Dead Canal’ (as it is known in environmental jargon) could save not only the hyper-saline desert lake but peace itself.

More Dead Than Red

The World Bank has declared the Red Sea-Dead Sea canal project feasible. Designed to “save the Dead Sea”, “desalinate water and/or generate hydroelectricity at affordable prices in Jordan, Israel and the Palestinian Authority”, and “build a symbol of peace in the Middle East”, the scheme, green groups warn, is fraught with environmental hazards.

Sierra Leone’s Waters of Life

A coastal city, Sierra Leone's capital, Freetown, is an area where people have relied on the ocean for food and employment for as long as they have lived there.

India Scores Low on Environmental Sustainability

Of the eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) -development targets agreed upon by the international community, whose 2015 deadline is approaching fast - MDG 7 has proven a particular challenge, especially for sprawling, populous countries like India.

Brazilian Firms Bring Water and Power to Angolans

The Kwanza river in the heart of Angola will be a symbol of Brazilian partnership in African development when power stations along the country's main source of water are fully operational.

Swiss Battery May Lose Power

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.

Brazilian Communities Revitalise the São Francisco River

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.

‘Urban Planning Must Factor in Biodiversity’

 “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.

Farming in Bangladesh Stays Afloat – Literally

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.

Water for Phosphate, Not People

Gafsa region in the south of Tunisia was once an oasis; today the phosphate industry has plunged it into a water crisis.


Floods Dampen Thai Adaptation Plans

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.

Kenya’s Water Wars Kill Scores

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.

Water in DRC More Often Cause of Death than Source of Life

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.

Nepal’s President Urged to Reject War-Era Amnesty

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.

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