The Stream, October 22: China’s Unrelenting Hydropower Growth

In an effort to move toward cleaner renewable energy, China is turning to huge hydropower projects and is currently adding 15 gigawatts of capacity each year, the Guardian reported. While the projects may cut coal’s share of energy production, they could also cause the displacement of thousands of people and alter river environments.

Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan will begin a detailed, joint analysis of Ethiopia’s Grand Renaissance Dam meant to fill in the gaps left by previous impact studies, Bloomberg News reported. The dam has been a source of contention between the Nile River countries.

For the next five years, farmers in northwestern Kansas are agreeing to pump out 20 percent less groundwater as part of a pilot program to slow the depletion of aquifers, NPR reported. Groundwater levels have been dropping rapidly due to the vast amount of water being drawn for irrigation.

Nitrogen applied as agricultural fertilizer can stay in the ground longer than was previously thought, meaning it has a longer time to leak into groundwater, according to Canadian researchers, UPI reported. High levels of nitrates in groundwater used for drinking water supplies have been identified as a problem in some agricultural areas of North America.

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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