Water, Peace, and War: Confronting the Global Water Crisis

Water, Peace, and War: Confronting the Global Water Crisis

Brahma Chellaney

Language: English

Pages: 424

ISBN: 1442249137

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


Water, Peace, and War: Confronting the Global Water Crisis, Updated Edition

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on Hungary’s 1989 unilateral abandonment of its part of the joint works on grounds that the binational project entailed serious risks to the Budapest municipal water supply and the natural environment. Slovakia, while insisting that Hungary meet its treaty obligations, proceeded to build on its territory an alternative project with transboundary implications for Hungary. The ICJ, in its 1997 decision, held that both Hungary and Slovakia had breached their legal obligations and thus each was

demarcating user domains and collecting reliable, widely accepted data, but also makes governance issues complex and conflictive when the competing users are sovereign states or even provinces or communities. Examples extend from the “war of the well” in drought-battered parts of northeastern Africa to the intracountry groundwater disputes in the United States between Nevada and Utah as well as between the state of Mississippi and the city of Memphis in Tennessee. As many transboundary river

wells. In the United States—the world’s second-largest producer of coal after China—natural-gas processing and pipeline operations consume more water daily than coal mining. It takes about eighty-seven liters of water on average to produce one kilowatt-hour of electricity to run an energy-efficient refrigerator for a day. Whereas fast-flowing water can be directly tapped to generate hydroelectricity, great amounts of water are required for cooling and steam-cycle processes at thermoelectric

intensity of the energy sector and offer environmentally sustainable options, there is little alternative to better management of the energy/water interrelationship, including by choosing lower-water-intensity designs in energy infrastructure expansion. Given that operational water withdrawal and consumption factors in thermoelectric generation vary significantly across fuel and cooling technologies, the greater use of natural gas over coal or uranium, for example, will bring significant savings

serve like “Mother Nature’s weapon of mass destruction,” even if a slow-acting one.111 To be sure, more scientific research is needed to help improve existing climate-change simulation models and build a better understanding and quantitative estimation of the likely impacts on freshwater resources. So that appropriate adaptation measures can be developed across multiple, water-dependent sectors, extending from energy production to public health, existing gaps in research must be plugged,

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