The Stream, August 12: Yemen Humanitarian Crisis “Nothing Short of Catastrophic”

The  Global Rundown

The Global Rundown

Aid agencies asked for greater access to deliver water and other supplies to war-torn Yemen, and Burkina Faso also asked for aid in the aftermath of severe flooding near its capital. Water rationing is not equal in Puerto Rico, activists said, while the territory’s water authority offered to sell bonds to improve its water system. Scientists in Canada engineered bacteria to test water quality remotely. Millions of tons of food — and the water used to grow it — are wasted in the European Union each year. Los Angeles finished a project to deploy “shade balls” to prevent evaporation from its reservoirs.

“The most affected residents have been those with the fewest resources. But in the hotels and the majority of condominiums, like the one I live in, the rationing either isn’t being done at all, or they’re only partially implementing it. So far, the population has remained calm, but I expect this inequality of sacrifices to eventually provoke protests.”–Jose Rivera, an activist and resident of San Juan, Puerto Rico, on the region’s water rationing, which has been put in place in response to a severe drought. (Think Progress)

By the Numbers

By The Numbers

20,000 people Number in Burkina Faso affected by floods near the capital city Ouagadougou. Food security is at risk after the floods destroyed harvests and livestock. Guardian

96 million Number of plastic “shade balls” covering the Los Angeles Reservoir to prevent evaporation and algal growth. The project could save more than 1 million cubic meters of water each year. NPR

$750 million Amount of bonds that Puerto Rico’s water authority is offering to sell in order to make system improvements. Reuters


Science, Studies, And Reports

Scientists in Calgary, Canada, developed genetically-engineered bacteria that can test water quality remotely and send the results back to a mobile phone. The bacteria are deployed in cartridges and are designed to react to water contaminants, such as arsenic. Discovery News

Approximately 22 million metric tons of food are wasted in the European Union each year, according to a study from the European Commission. Water and nitrogen resources are also lost through the food waste, 80 percent of which is avoidable, the study found.

On the Radar

On The Radar

The International Committee of the Red Cross asked fighting groups in Yemen to allow aid organizations free access to deliver food, water, and medicine to the country, calling the humanitarian crisis “nothing short of catastrophic”. Reuters

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