Tag Archive for 'politics of water'

Pak-India Water War

Photo retrieved from: www.pakistan33.blogspot.com

“It is rumored that the Indian government is taking seriously a statement made by the Pakistan Chief of Army Staff, General Ashfaq Pervez Kayani, during his visit to the United States. The assertion is “water is taking the centre stage to an array of disputes between India and Pakistan”. Why to make so much fuss about this, in fact every Pakistani today feels that India is way bent to convert Pakistan into a desert by controlling its rivers and diverting the flow towards Mother India. The Indians are probably perturbed because they think that the issue has now come under the security spotlight.

The water crisis of Pakistan is directly affecting the food security of the agriculture based country. Like Egypt, Pakistan is also a single-river system-based country which is of course, the Indus. The Ganges-loving Indians are after Pakistan’s Indus – a war of geographical deities. Pakistan is a hydraulic society, whose complete economy is agrarian based; even its industry is nothing more than value addition to agricultural produce. Pakistan’s economy is based on informal sectors, therefore is outside the proper evaluation network. 80% of this is based upon agriculture. India has realized the real Achilles heel of this economy and is trying to steal Pakistan’s share of water. The Indians are even having a second thought over the Indus water treaty, rather they have almost redefined the terms and conditions as per their own national interests.

The biggest dispute between Pakistan and India in coming months is going to be the Indus water treaty. It is the declared water aggression which the Indians have perpetrated. The Indus Basin Treaty is based upon four cardinal principles of agreement; one is the division of three eastern rivers to India and three western rivers of the Indus water system to Pakistan. Second was the financial support to assist Pakistan in making dams and canals to make with the loss of eastern rivers.”

Read more: Pakistan Observer

The drying of the West; The Colorado River and the civilisation it waters are in crisis

Photo retrieved from: TheEconomist.com

“In the northern states, its water supports cattle empires. In its southern stretch, especially in California’s Imperial County, the river irrigates deserts to produce America’s winter vegetables. And all along the way, aqueducts branch off to supply cities from Salt Lake City and Denver to Phoenix and Los Angeles. The metropolis closest to Lake Mead, Las Vegas, gets 90% of its water from this one source.

“That is why Las Vegas is a canary in the mine shaft, as Pat Mulroy, the boss of the Southern Nevada Water Authority, puts it. The Las Vegas valley gets its water through two long channels drilled through the rock. The first taps the lake at 1,050 feet (320 metres) above sea level, the second at 1,000 feet. Lake Mead’s water level is now near its record low, at 1,086 feet. Within a few years it could leave Las Vegas’s first intake, or even both, dry.

“The threat to Sin City is a good example of the four dimensions—physical, legal, political and cultural—of water in the West. For the physical, the standard response is to summon the engineers. Ms Mulroy already has them digging a third intake at 890 feet. Given the weight of the water on top, this is fiendishly difficult and will not be ready until 2014. Ms Mulroy also wants to pipe groundwater from the rural and wetter northern counties of Nevada to Las Vegas, but that has caused a vicious row.”

read more: The Economist