The Stream, March 14: Bolivia’s Shrinking Lake Poopó Harms Communities

The Global Rundown

Indigenous communities are struggling to maintain their livelihoods near Lake Poopó, one of Bolivia’s largest lakes, which is now less than 1 percent of its former size. Police have been mobilized in India to ensure the delivery of water in drought-hit Maharashtra state. The United Nations has agreed on a draft framework for tracking progress toward the Sustainable Development Goals. Chief executives’ reputations are rarely harmed by environmental lawsuits, a new study found. The estimated cost to clean up a nickel refinery in Queensland, Australia has doubled.

“The lake is a victim of a perfect storm of climate change, El Niño and Bolivian development practices, mining in particular, that plays havoc with water in many ways.” –Jim Shultz, executive director of the Democracy Centre in Cochabamba, Bolivia, on the forces that have conspired to shrink Bolivia’s Lake Poopó to less than 1 percent of its former size. (Financial Times)

By The Numbers

230 indicators Number in a draft framework approved by the United Nations Statistical Commission to track global progress toward the Sustainable Development Goals. UN News Centre

$100 million Estimated cost of environmental rehabilitation at a Queensland Nickel refinery in Australia, double the amount of previous estimates. Much of the cost would be cleaning up waste ponds. Guardian

Science, Studies, And Reports

Chief executives face few reputational repercussions if their companies become involved in environmental lawsuits, according to a study by researchers at the University of Adelaide. The study used data based on lawsuits filed between 2000 and 2007, suggesting that practices at companies may have changed since then due to increased public scrutiny of environmental records. Guardian

On The Radar

Police forces in India were mobilized last week to ensure the delivery of water from reservoirs to cities amid a growing water crisis in Maharashtra state. Droughts and the mismanagement of groundwater sources have increased tensions between water users in the state. The Hindu

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