The Stream, May 7: Investors Warn Water Crisis Threatens Food and Beverage Sector

The  Global Rundown

The Global Rundown

Groundwater in Jordan is declining under the full weight of the conflict in Syria, and poppy farmers in Afghanistan will be planting a more potent and water-efficient opium crop this year. Satellite-based flood forecasting capabilities are in danger, and the food and beverage sectors could be curtailed by water scarcity.

“Many of the companies assessed in this report had relatively weak systems – if any at all – for collecting and interpreting data on the severity of their exposure to water risks.” – Quote from a new report by Ceres that warns water scarcity could cut growth globally for the food and beverage sectors. (Bloomberg)

By the Numbers

By The Numbers

5 meters per yearRate of decline of Jordan’s aquifers. Random pumping of the aquifers, which worsened dramatically with the advent of the Syrian refugee crisis in 2011, is responsible for the decline. According to data collected by the Jordanian water ministry in collaboration with international institutions, groundwater pumped in 2012 was almost double what is considered a safe and sustainable amount. Al-Bawaba


Science, Studies, And Reports

Four of the 10 rainfall monitoring satellites currently circling the globe are older than their design lives, with others facing similar expiration dates soon. There are no plans to replace the satellites, and this could be extremely detrimental to the flood-forecasting capabilities of scientists, according to a new study published in Environmental Research Letters. The study also found that replacing the four older satellites with just two new ones would actually result in an overall improvement in flood forecasting, due to the increased capabilities of newer satellites. Environmental Research Web

On the Radar

On The Radar

A new breed of poppy seed that produces double the amount of opium using much less water is expected to boost Afghanistan’s export of the drug this year. The seeds were apparently delivered by the same drug lord intermediaries who advance cash and provide tools for the farmers, and who collect the crop at the end of the season. Huffington Post

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