The Stream, May 18: China Water Quality May Benefit From New U.S. Trade Deal

The Global Rundown

Water pollution from China’s agricultural sector could decline if imports of U.S. meat increase under a new trade deal. Scientists believe a newly discovered reservoir of hot water below New Zealand could provide a substantial source of geothermal energy. An anti-corruption investigation into New Delhi’s water tanker scandal is reaching the capital’s chief minister. A company in Dubai hopes to begin importing icebergs from the Indian Ocean as early as 2019. A spill of gasoline and diesel fuel may have contaminated the Shuswap River in British Columbia, which is used as a municipal water source. Crews in Flint, Michigan are having difficulty finding lead service lines to replace as part of an initiative to address water contamination.

“The icebergs are just floating in the Indian Ocean. They are up for grabs to whoever can take them.” –Abdullah al-Shehi, managing director of the National Advisor Bureau Limited company in Dubai. The company hopes to tow icebergs 9,200 kilometers from the Indian Ocean to provide fresh water for the Arabian Peninsula as early as 2019. (Associated Press)

In context: Company proposes bulk water shipments from Alaska to California.

By The Numbers

22 percent of the excavations to find and replace lead water lines in Flint, Michigan have instead found copper water lines due to incomplete and inaccurate records. The city is considering the use of “hydro excavation” techniques to cut costs and speed up the replacement process. MLive

16,600 liters Amount of gasoline and diesel that spilled from a tanker truck into a flooded field near the Shuswap River in British Columbia this week. Canadian officials issued water advisories for the area, but did not say if the fuel had contaminated the river, which is used as a municipal water source. CBC News

Science, Studies, And Reports

Water deep below the mountains along New Zealand’s Alpine Fault could provide a significant future source of geothermal energy, according to scientists at the Victoria University of Wellington. Researchers found that rain water and snow melt are being heated below the mountains to temperatures reaching 100 degrees Celsius. Associated Press

On The Radar

A new trade deal between China and the United States could ease the amount of water and air pollution in China, according to the director of WWF’s China Program. Increased imports of U.S. meat products, in particular, would provide a “huge benefit to China’s water environment” by reducing the amount of pollution produced by China’s own agricultural sector. chinadialogue

In context: Across much of China, huge harvests are irrigated with industrial and agricultural runoff.

Anti-corruption officials in India have started questioning aides close to the chief minister of New Delhi as part of a probe into the “water tanker scam” in the capital. The investigation arose from allegations that water service was being intentionally withheld in parts of the city to boost the water tanker business. NDTV