The Stream, May 10: Iran Mulls Water Transfers

The Global Rundown

Iran is moving forward with plans for two major water transfers to ease shortages in its central provinces. Greater transparency is needed to resolve disputes between China and India over the Brahmaputra River, according to a new report. As the costs to respond to global humanitarian disasters skyrocket and more people are in need, donations are failing to meet funding appeals. The drought in South Africa needs to spark a shift in attitudes about water, according to researchers. A massive wildfire in Alberta has damaged drinking water in Fort McMurray, where thousands have been evacuated.

“We won’t see the regularity of the rainfall and be able to predict that, and we have to be much more prepared to adapt our management structures and the way in which we’re managing water ultimately at the user end.” –Kevin Winter, a lecturer at the University of Cape Town, on a needed shift in the way South Africans view and use water. Water levels in the country’s dams continue to decline amid a severe drought. (Eyewitness News)

By The Numbers

$19.3 billion Amount of global humanitarian aid appeals led by the United Nations in 2015, six times the amount of appeals a decade ago. Little more than half of that amount was funded. Reuters

161,000 hectares Land burned so far by a massive wildfire in Alberta, one of the worst in Canadian history. The fire forced thousands of people to evacuate from the city of Fort McMurray, and it has rendered the water there undrinkable. Reuters

Science, Studies, And Reports

Resolving tensions between China and India over the Brahmaputra River will require improved sharing of hydrological data and greater transparency about plans for dams, according to a report released by CNA Analysis and Solutions. Both countries are eyeing the river for its hydropower potential, as well as political control of disputed areas of the river basin. The Wall Street Journal

On The Radar

Iran is once again moving forward with plans for two major transfer projects to bring desalinated water from the Caspian Sea, Persian Gulf, and Sea of Oman to provinces in the central part of the country. Researchers are urging the government to implement other measures, such as conservation incentives and improved farming techniques, before resorting to risky water transfers. Tehran Bureau

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