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Mideast water shortage could fuel political tensions: experts

 
-NIGHTMARE-
05/22/2005 08:12 PM
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Mideast water shortage could fuel political tensions: experts
Mideast water shortage could fuel political tensions: experts

SHUNEH, Jordan (AFP) May 21, 2005
The Middle East is faced with the prospect of a serious water crisis that could lead to political tensions and hamper prosperity, experts told a session of a World Economic Forum (WEF) Saturday.

"We are not secure about water supplies. Supplies are simply not enough ... This is a scary issue," Hazem Nasser, former Jordanian water and irrigation minister told the session.

He said that with the current population growth rate in the Arab world, the picture looks even more gloomier.

"In 1950, the Arab population was 75 million. In 2,000, it was 300 million, and is expected to grow to 600 million by 2025."

He said the deficit of water in the region was 30 billion cubic meters (approximately 7.95 trillion imperial gallons) last year and is expected to grow to 175 billion cubic meters (46 trillion gallons) in 2025.

"Most of the countries in the region have exhausted their water resources," he said, adding the only hope is costly desalination of sea water.

With new technology advances, desalination costs have dropped to 53 cents per cubic meter from two dollars a few years ago, Naser said. But the cost has now increased again due to skyrocketing oil prices.

He said a proposed project to link the Red Sea to the Dead Sea with a canal is "an excellent platform for stability" as it can secure sufficient water supplies to Jordan, Israel and the Palestinian territories.

Avishay Braverman, president of Ben-Gurion University in Israel, said current shortages in those three areas amount to 3.5 billion cubic metersbillion gallons) annually.

"You have two options, either you import water or desalinate, and I say desalinate," he said.

He said water shortages should not be used as a pretext for war because "investment needed for desalination of sea water for 40 years equals spending on defense for one year."

The experts warned that Dead Sea level has dropped from 392 metersfeet) below sea level a few years ago to 416 meters (1,365 feet) now. They called for quick solutions.


All rights reserved. © 2005 Agence France-Presse.

[link to www.terradaily.com]
-NIGHTMARE-
12/08/2005 10:16 AM
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Re: Mideast water shortage could fuel political tensions: experts
Israel, Arabs agree to save Dead Sea

SHUNEH, Jordan (AFP) May 22, 2005
Jordan, Israel and the Palestinian Authority said Sunday they had agreed terms for a feasibility study on transferring water from the Red Sea to the Dead Sea, to save the world´s lowest sea from vanishing.


[link to www.terradaily.com]
neti
12/08/2005 10:16 AM
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Re: Mideast water shortage could fuel political tensions: experts
I thought some of the problem lay with Turkey. Turkey had dammed the river, or is in process of damming it, which flows eastwards into the rest of the Middle East...

There was a documentary about the water situation resulting from Turkey´s damming of the river, several years ago on television.

Will try to look it up later. Going off-line for a little while.

Thanks for posting,
neti
Anonymous Coward
12/08/2005 10:16 AM
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Re: Mideast water shortage could fuel political tensions: experts
The geopolitics of Lebanon may also come into play. It´s considered a water-surplus state and supplies much water to both Israel and Syria.
salimandr nli
12/08/2005 10:16 AM
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Re: Mideast water shortage could fuel political tensions: experts
7546,
i agree with your lebanon thought. they have "owned" the water for a few years and israel, well...sharon....would love to take over the power there by controling the water.
daleth
12/08/2005 10:16 AM
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Re: Mideast water shortage could fuel political tensions: experts
Just tossing this out there.

Nuclear Desalination
[link to www.uic.com.au]
neti
12/08/2005 10:16 AM
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Re: Mideast water shortage could fuel political tensions: experts
Here´s the story on Turkey.


´Turkey - It´s All in the Water´
Foreign Correspondent
Broadcast: 04/07/2000
Reporter: Mark Corcoran
[link to www.abc.net.au]

"Most importantly, the downstream states of Iraq and Syria, who also rely on the rivers for water, warn of possible war over water in the future as the dams choke off their lifeblood"


Also, the Iraqi wetlands are drying-up

"the enormous Attaturk Dam on the Euphrates River in Turkey is starving the marshlands of water, and there are plans to build another on the Tigris in Turkey, the Ilisu Dam...|| The Attaturk Dam on the Euphrates River in Turkey is part of the South East Anatolia Project known as GAP after its Turkish initials. The project envisages 22 dams and 19 hydro-electric power plants on the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers and their tributaries. According to the Turkish Government, GAP is one of the most ambitious regional development projects ever attempted in the world. But the water which once fed the Mesopotamian Marshlands won’t only be used in Turkey. It may find its way into Israel, Palestine and Jordan.

´Mesopotamian Marshlands´
Earth Beat
29/3/2003
[link to www.abc.net.au]

____




daleth,

UIC stands for Uranium Information Center.
[link to www.uic.com.au]

It´s based in Melbourne.
Anonymous Coward
12/08/2005 10:16 AM
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Re: Mideast water shortage could fuel political tensions: experts
"In 1950, the Arab population was 75 million. In 2,000, it was 300 million, and is expected to grow to 600 million by 2025."

There is your problem.

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