The Syr Darya: An Example of Failure

Via The Foreign Policy Association, unfortunate news regarding the fate of the Syr Darya river in Central Asia, a true example of the failure of regional cooperation and water politics.  As the article notes:

“…On March 26, at a meeting in Almaty of state-sponsored environmentalists and ecologists, the Syr Darya was declared too polluted to even be used for irrigation in Kazakhstan. By the time the river weaves through the other Central Asian states, including through the Ferghana Valley, the river has accumulated the runoff from massive amounts of industrial and agricultural waste. Clothes are washed in the river and detergents continue downstream. According to the scientists, food grown using this water should be not be eaten and any crops in the field grown with the water should be burned.

Mothers are passing pesticides to the children they nurse and feeding cancer-causing rice to their children. Cancers in general have been increasing. Food security is also an issue as irrigation from the Syr-Darya grows crops and feeds millions. Again, this is an issue that requires regional cooperation, which so far has not been found on a range of issues.”

This entry was posted on Friday, May 8th, 2009 at 10:14 am and is filed under Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan.  You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.  Both comments and pings are currently closed. 

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