The Stream, September 10: Canada’s Mount Polley Mine Continued to Leak Waste Into Water

Harmful tailings waste from the Mount Polley mine in British Columbia was found to be leaking into nearby rivers on September 4, more than a month after a tailings dam at the site burst and released billions of gallons of tailings, Reuters reported. The provincial government said the company has curbed the leaks now, but worries remain about how the tailings containment might fare in heavy rain.

Water Supply
American cities will need to invest $US 4.8 trillion in water infrastructure over the next 20 years, according to estimates from the U.S. Conference of Mayors, Politico reported. Ed Lee and Annise Parker, the mayors of San Francisco and Houston, respectively, write that failing water infrastructure is a serious threat to the United States economy as a whole, but improvements are almost always paid for by local governments.

A water shortage has been blamed for allowing a fire to destroy 600 homes in a poor neighborhood of Sao Paulo, Xinhua reported, citing local media. Residents say a lack of water in the drought-hit city interrupted the fire fighting efforts, though the head of the fire department denied the statement.

As China prepares to bring the second phase of its massive South-North water transfer project online next month, concerns are being voiced about the project’s effect on economic development in the source water basins, Reuters reported. The transfer project will carry one third of Beijing’s water supply, and will also bring water for northern China’s industrial and agricultural sectors.

Despite more than $US 1 billion flowing into Pakistan to improve flood resiliency after record floods in 2010, little improvement has been made due to reasons like poor management and lack of political will, experts told AlertNet. After the recent spate of floods in the Kashmir region, residents are saying they had little warning about the coming disaster.

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