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Water Conflicts around the globe and areas that may become confrontational

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  1. 1. FlashpointA2 Geography
  2. 2. Learning Objectives• To understand the concept that water scarcity can lead to conflict• Water insecurity can lead to political insecurity
  3. 3. Why we fight• Rising demand from rising pop’n and economic growth in areas that are politically unstable• International agreements, disputes and treaties reflect the urgency of the these situation
  4. 4. The Players• There are many players in water conflicts however there are the usual suspects:• WTO• TNC• UN
  5. 5. WTO and TNC• As countries drive for economic growth there demand for water increases• Many developing countries have benefited from aid to improve water provision• Riparian people are given a voice and guidelines are drawn up• However this is not always the case
  6. 6. • WTO encourage countries to open up to private investment in return for debt relief• Countries wishing to develop need to develop their water provision• They turn to private companies• Water becomes business as infrastructures built by TNC’s e.g. Veolia/Vivendi• Consumer now have to pay more• Potential for water riots grows
  7. 7. UN• 2000 – World Water Assessment Programme• Monitors changes in demand and the chance or likelihood of increased tensions• Their role is to find peaceful solutions• It has done this quite well.• Between 1948 – 1998 only 43 ended with military action (18 involving Israel)
  8. 8. TNC • Annual profits for the water industry are about 40% of the oil industry and rising Company Customer Countries Profits s in of Millions Operation Suez 125 40 $5 billVeolia/Vivendi 110 50 $608 mill Bechtel – 140 50 $31.4 billUnited Utilities
  9. 9. The Middle East• The Middle East and N. Africa is one of the driest places on the planet• Has 1% of freshwater for 5% of global pop’n• Amount varies between 1200m3 /yr in Iran to 200m3 /yr in Jordan• By 2025 there will be a forecasted average of only 500m2 over the area. • UK = 1695m3 USA = 2900m3
  10. 10. Reasons• What do you think are the reasons?• Pop’n growth• Increasing Affluence• Irrigation develpt in farming• Groundwater extracted faster than it is replenished• Fossil reserves used to satisfy farmers needs.• Farmers use 89% of all water
  11. 11. Pressure• 1991 UN Secretary general stated “The next war in the middle east will not be about politics but over water” REASONS• An Overall scarcity of water• Declining oil reserves leading to reduced financing of economic developt• Rising youthful pop’n
  12. 12. Desalination• Many countries in Middle East use this expensive method to create a large supply
  13. 13. HYC• Farmers rely on High yield crops which consume vast amounts of water• Turkey and Israel use the improved productivity to fuel economic develop’t• These require access to rivers, which flow through neighbouring countries• These impact on countries like Syria, Iraq, Jordan and Lebanon.
  14. 14. Turkey and Israel• Euphrates and Tigris originate in Turkey• Over used is cutting supplies off to Syria and Iraq due to a GAP Scheme• The 6 day war 1967 was a direct impact of threats to Israel’s water supply as Other states tried to destroy Israel’s National Water Carrier project
  15. 15. • Bombing of Lebanese pipelines in 2006 by Israel highlighted growing tensions in the region.• See Case Study on Turkey and Israel.
  16. 16. Activity• Using pages 69 – 71 decide who the players are. Who is in favour of the scheme and why and who is against it and why.