Archive for April, 2011

The Aral Sea

Courtesy of Foreign Policy, an updated look at the tragedy of the Aral Sea: Aral Sea Satellite Outline in 2009, Showing the Original Shoreline of 1960. Courtesy of NASA “…The Aral Sea, shared by Kazakhstan to the north and Uzbekistan to the south, is a sad story of one of the most devastating ecological disasters […]

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The Thirsty Dragon: China’s Water Supply At Risk

Via Terra Daily, a report that China’s government has officially recognized the threat that climate change is posing for China’s water supply: “China faces an imbalance between the supply and demand of water to support its rapid social and economic development, while protecting the natural environment and ecosystems,” Minister of Water Resources Chen Lei told […]

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The Thirsty Dragon: Dam Tensions On The Mekong

Two additional articles looking at the recent tensions over planned dams on the Mekong. First, via the Washington Post, a report that China defended its ambitious network of dams, saying that it is developing its rivers in a responsible way and would never do anything to harm the interests of neighbors who live downstream of […]

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The Thirsty Dragon: Laos’ Dam Project and the China-Vietnam Balance

Courtesy of STRATFOR (subscription required), an interesting look at Laos’ reported deferral of its decision on whether to pursue a controversial dam on the Mekong River that has sparked strong opposition from its downstream neighbors, particularly Vietnam. Though Vietnam retains strong influence over Laos, and could use its investment and aid as a bargaining chip […]

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The Thirsty Dragon: Water Wars – China’s New ‘Political Weapon’?

Courtesy of The San Francisco Chronicle, an interesting article looking at how China’s vast thirst for power and water and its control over the sources of the rivers is giving it significant potential leverage it can use to keep any riparian neighbors on good behavior.  As the article notes: “…The wall of water raced through […]

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The Thirsty Dragon: Fossil Fuel Wealth, Water, and Poverty in Xinjiang

Via Circle of Blue, a brief look at the tension between China’s desire to promote growth in its Xinjiang region and the lack of water there.  As the article notes, Xinjiang has few local water sources, and even those are complicated by international politics. The Irtysh River and the Ili River originate in Xinjiang, before […]

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