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Read the New eBook

Choke Point: India - The Leopard in the Well

Read the New eBook

Choke Point: India - The Leopard in the Well
Circle of Blue Reports
India Naraingarh Haryana Vinod Ashoka Gupta Shivshakti Rice Mill grain buyer production harvest depot trader seller water food energy choke point circle of blue wilson center j. carl ganter

In an attempt to remove risk from the grain-producing economy, India guarantees that it will purchase at generous prices and mill at no cost to producers every kernel of wheat and almost every grain of rice that its farmers grow.

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India Punjab Nawanshar Pam Sekhon Dhaliwal family farm farming farmer Green Revolution winter wheat rice paddies harvest crop cropland tractor poplar aspen electricity electric groundwater well pump flood irrigation water food energy choke point circle of blue wilson center j. carl ganter

Before the Green Revolution of the mid-1960s, growers in northern India produced an elegant feast of native fruits, grains, and vegetables. By the 1980s, Punjab and Haryana states had together become the largest rice and wheat producers in India.

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India Chandigarh Punjab Irrigation Department K.S. Takshi groundwater recharge rate urbanization well pump reservoir canal surface water food energy choke point circle of blue wilson center j. carl ganter

Home to 1 million, Chandigarh is considered the ‘cleanest city’ in India. It also has the highest per capita income, thanks in large part to the agricultural boom since the Green Revolution of the 1960s in both Punjab and Haryana states of northern India.

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India Punjab

Farm policies intended to remove risk from the grain-producing economy have pulled India from the perennial fear of famine. But inefficient bureaucracy and rampant corruption also promote the squandering of resources and a glut of food that is not reaching the poor.

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India water food energy choke point infographic graphic data coal groundwater scarcity bureaucracy

India’s resource problems are not those of scarcity, but rather of inefficient use and bureaucratic policies.

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thumbnail-india-video

After spending a month in India, Circle of Blue’s India team members debrief their findings.

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Punjab irrigation water well electric pump farm farming wheat crop rice paddy water table aquifer electricity generation Choke Point India water food energy nexus Circle of Blue Wilson Center Punjab Title: Irrigation well in Punjab, India

Thanks in large part to the Green Revolution that catalyzed grain production in the mid-1960s, India ended the perennial fear of famine. But achieving food abundance has overwhelmed India’s mammoth and unwieldy bureaucracy, drained its freshwater reserves, and strained the energy sector and electrical grid.

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2013_30citesfinal

Utilities tinker with rate structures designed to stabilize revenue.

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FrackMap_Ceres

Energy companies should provide better data on fracking water use, and investors should push for quantifiable water targets, according to a sustainable investing advocacy group.

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Marcellus Shale well pad

Though groundwater gets most of the attention, rivers are also affected by the rush of shale gas development across the United States, according to a new study that claims both wastewater and well development degrade water quality, but in different ways.

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A canal fed by the Liaohe River is seen near Xinmin, Liaoning, China on Sept 26, 2012.

Pollution is a major driver of water scarcity in China, especially in the places where economic growth is the highest and water resources are under the most stress — China’s dry northern breadbaskets and its biggest manufacturing hubs in the south and east.

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China Water Resources

Click through the interactive infographic to see how China, the world’s largest nation and second-largest economy, faces multiple challenges for sustaining its water supply.

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Keystone-Puzzle2

It is time we just said “no.”

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China Energy Production

Click through the interactive infographic to see how China, the world’s largest nation and second-largest economy, races to meet rising demand for energy.

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Keystone XL reroute map

Despite a new route, farmers still worry about groundwater contamination and property rights.

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Mario Batalli - Conservancy

The dirty truth about the world’s largest grain producer.

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A water transport construction worker rests atop a bulk water container near Tilda, northwest of Raipur in Chhattisgarh, India.

It’s been a couple of weeks since our Circle of Blue team completed its 27-day research trip to India.

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top-ten-2013-wn-banner

Best-in-class reporting on the confrontation between water, food, and energy that influenced policy making in Asia, proved invaluable to university researchers in Europe, and informed citizens and the media in the United States and around the world.

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The recent oil and gas boom in the United States has been good business for the Carlsbad, New Mexico water department. Perhaps too good.

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JGANTER_Chandigarh_G3_2209-590

Free power, water, fertilizer, and chemicals encourages abuse of resources for world’s number two rice and wheat producer.

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