The Stream, December 14: Water Situation ‘Critical’ in Bulawayo

Water Shortages
A severe water shortage in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe’s second largest city, has officials seeking $82 million to implement mid-term solutions and warning that water rationing could continue well into 2013, News Day reported. Declining rainfall and a growing population in the region have contributed to the shortage.

Dry conditions in Texas are stoking tensions over water sharing in the Lower Colorado River. Two Texas state legislators have expressed concerns over the Lower Colorado River Authority’s new emergency water management plan, which they argue would continue to send water to rice farmers at the expense of the Highland Lakes area, NPR reported.

To protect farmers from severe drought and other extreme weather, Sri Lanka’s government is proposing a national crop insurance program, AlertNet reported. The program will be funded by financial and insurance companies, as well as farmers who take part in the government’s fertilizer subsidy program.

Britain has lifted its 2011 ban on shale gas drilling, but hydraulic fracturing activities will be more closely regulated and monitored to reduce the risk of earthquakes, Reuters reported. Two small earthquakes that were linked to shale gas exploration prompted the ban.

In this Q&A with Yale Environment 360, CERN researcher Jasper Kirkby explains how his team at the Switzerland laboratory is discovering the role clouds play in Earth’s temperature control.

Beijing’s drainage system is being overhauled to improve the city’s resilience to heavy downpours, like the deluge that killed 80 people in July, Xinhua reported. The work is expected to be complete by June 2013.

The Stream is a daily digest spotting global water trends. To get more water news, follow Circle of Blue on Twitter and sign up for our newsletter.

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