A 330-megawatt dam under construction in the Indus River Basin has re-ignited the water tensions between India and Pakistan in the disputed region of Kashmir. The hydropower project is the first to be referred to international arbitration under the World Bank-mediated Indus Water Treaty and signals an escalation in the Indo-Pakistani race to secure priority water rights on the Indus River, according to this article for Chinadialogue.
And here’s yet another dam project financed by China. Mauritius, which a newly released water ranking identified as one of the most water-stressed countries in the world, plans to start construction on a second dam in September, Bloomberg reports.
Can markets successfully allocate scarce water resources? According to this article in the Financial Times, water trading might offer an alternative way to set a price on water. And while Australia has long maintained a water rights market, the Ningxia and Inner Mongolia regions are testing China’s first water rights trading projects.
BC Group has suspended construction on a major gas pipeline for its coal seam gas to LNG project in Queensland, Australia, after internal review showed that work could violate environmental conditions. The coal-seam gas LNG export project has caused a backlash among local communities but last year received environmental approval from the government, Reuters reports.
The United States has become the first country to ban food imports from Japan after water in Tokyo showed dangerous for infants radiation levels following the leaks from the damaged Fukushima nuclear power plant. Hong Kong also banned food and milk products from the affected Japanese prefectures.
Stockholm Water Prize 2011
In other news, U.S. environmental scientist Stephen Carpenter has won this year’s Stockholm Water Prize for his research on lake ecosystems, and how human activity and surrounding landscapes affect them, AP reports.