The Stream, March 8: China Considers Major Water Pipeline From Lake Baikal

The Global Rundown

A proposed pipeline would bring fresh water from Russia’s Lake Baikal, one of the largest lakes in the world, to China’s Lanzhou city. Syria’s government recaptured vital water infrastructure for the city of Aleppo, which has been without its main supply for more than a month. Malaysia will likely extend a ban on bauxite mining due to water pollution concerns. A U.S. federal judge ruled against a request by the Cheyenne River Sioux to stop the Dakota Access oil pipeline. Below-normal rainfall in Brazil could cut hydropower production and increase electricity prices this year.

“Trump and his friends at Big Oil have not won. While this preliminary ruling is disappointing, it’s not surprising. The bigger legal battle is ahead –- we stand strong.” –Dave Archambault, chairman of the Standing Rock Sioux, after a federal court denied a request by the Cheyenne River Sioux to stop the Dakota Access oil pipeline. The pipeline, which has largely been opposed over concerns about water, could soon begin operation. (Bloomberg)

By The Numbers

70 percent of normal Expected level of summer rainfall across Brazil, curbing hydropower production and pushing electricity prices higher, according to power officials. Reuters

3 months Length of time Malaysia will likely extend its ban on bauxite mining due to unresolved pollution and water contamination. Reuters

Science, Studies, And Reports

The water treatment plant and pumping stations for the city of Aleppo are once again under the control of the Syrian army after it advanced against the Islamic State, according to a report by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. The city lost its main water supply almost two months ago. Reuters

On The Radar

China is eyeing Lake Baikal as a potential water supply for Lanzhou, the capital of Gansu province. Tapping the water would require a 1,000-kilometer pipeline from Russia, where some government officials have expressed interest in exporting fresh water. Guardian

In context: China is no stranger to massive water transfer projects. Learn more about the South-North project bringing water to Beijing and other cities.