The Stream, August 7: Militants Control Iraq’s Mosul Dam

Militant forces of the Islamic State have taken over the Mosul Dam in Iraq, the country’s largest dam and a strategic control point that experts say could be used as a weapon, Bloomberg News reported. The group has used dams in the past to flood areas or withhold water and electricity, but so far normal operations have continued at Mosul.

Queensland’s government has repealed the state’s Wild Rivers Act, which restricted the development of dams, mining and agriculture near designated wilderness river areas, the Guardian reported. While the government insists it will pass new legislation to protect the region’s rivers, environmental groups say the proposed laws are not as stringent as the previous Act.

An extensive drought in Queensland and New South Wales has drawn down water supplies and will likely prompt farmers to plant less cotton next season, Bloomberg News reported. Industry groups estimate that production of cotton next year could be about half of the amount produced this year.

Officials in Sao Paulo, Brazil, have missed a federally imposed deadline to either create a plan for the city’s dwindling water supply or begin rationing, the Los Angeles Times reported. The city’s primary reservoir could have less than 100 days of water left, according to estimates, but the city is still hoping to avoid rationing.

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