The Stream, October 29: South Africa Begins Water Restrictions Amid Drought

The  Global Rundown

The Global Rundown

A severe drought in South Africa forced utilities to put in place water restrictions for Johannesburg and other major cities, while state officials in drought-hit California prepared for floods from El Nino. Dry weather in Europe is creating a shortage of oil in some inland countries due to low river levels. Residents of small Pacific island nations may lose drinking water before they are flooded by rising sea levels. The World Health Organization plans to vaccinate thousands of people in Iraq against cholera.

“The whole market in the western and southern part of Germany is waiting for rain. Every day you hear availability problems in storage and have to find one (with oil) to make sure that the households and the industry stay supplied.”–An oil trader in Europe on dry weather that is creating a bottleneck for oil transportation along the Rhine River to inland countries. (Reuters)

By the Numbers

By The Numbers

255,000 people Number the World Health Organization hopes to vaccinate against cholera in Iraq to curb an outbreak of the disease, which is spread through contaminated water and food. Reuters

1,200 state employees Number trained in California to help manage floods that the drought-stricken state is expecting due to a strong El Nino. The state is also preparing sandbags and other flood control supplies. Reuters


Science, Studies, And Reports

Researchers studying small Pacific islands say the atolls are not so much washing away from rising sea levels, but are nonetheless at risk from inadequate drinking water supplies and saltwater intrusion. Flooding is also a significant problem on some heavily populated, low-lying islands. Nature

On the Radar

On The Radar

South Africa now has 12-hour water restrictions in place for residents of Johannesburg, Pretoria, and Ekurhuleni. The country is experiencing its worst drought in 23 years amid a heatwave. Bloomberg

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