The Stream, July 5: Groundwater Shortages, Growing Uncertainty, And Deadly Contamination
The Global Rundown
A growing population and water shortages are already starting to affect India’s industrial sector, while Peru looks to correct its own water imbalances. Studies and tests confirm there are pain killers in several Kenyan counties’ water supplies and brain-eating amoebas in one North Carolina water park. Meanwhile, the UK could find itself cut off from one major source of green energy funding. And an Irish dignitary and the heads of several prominent international aid organizations are traveling to Ethiopia, where more than 10.2 million people urgently need food aid.
“Despite the efforts of the Government of Ethiopia, and humanitarian partners, the impacts of climate change have weakened people’s ability to cope with El Niño, which is unfair considering Ethiopia’s negligible contribution to global greenhouse gas emissions.” — Mary Robinson, United Nations special envoy for climate change and former Irish president, lamented prior to her humanitarian trip to the African nation. (The Irish Times)
By The Numbers
4 percent Amount of the world’s fresh water India receives, despite being home to nearly a sixth of the planet’s inhabitants. Experts predict demand will exceed supply by half by 2030, and many in the nation’s industrial sector are already feeling the effects of too little water. Bloomberg
11 samples Number collected by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention from the U.S. National Whitewater Center’s man-made whitewater river, which tested positive for Naegleria fowleri, a deadly amoeba linked to the recent death of an Ohio teen. Though now closed, previously the artificial river recirculated 12 million gallons of water from the city’s municipal system, but was not regularly checked for pathogens by local health officials. CNN
$9 billion Amount Peru’s incoming government would need to invest in potable water and sewerage infrastructure to service its entire population. Currently 87 percent have access to potable water and 75 percent have access to sewage services. President-elect Pedro Pablo Kuczynski, who will take office July 28, indicated his administration will work to close the country’s inequality gap through water infrastructure projects. Business News Americas
Science, Studies, And Reports
A study has found that the drinking water in several Kenyan counties contains antiretrovirals and pain killers. Experts from the University of Eldoret and Ghent University, Belgium who conducted the study indicated that while not inherently dangerous, trace amounts of these drugs in the water supply could expedite resistance. A similar study from 2013 found that chickens who had been fed antivirals were the source of such contamination. News24
On The Radar
Brexit could impede the UK’s access to highly competitive European Investment Bank loans for green energy and infrastructure projects. The EIB has supplied more than $55 billion in low cost loans over the past 10 years, including a $9 billion Climate Awareness Bond Project of which the UK received almost a quarter. BusinessGreen
Circle of Blue contributor
Nick is interested in the social and political instability caused by growing global resource scarcity. He is also the director of communication at On the Ground, an international aid and development NGO that supports sustainable community development in farming regions.