The Stream, March 29: Nepalese Farmers Dispute Water-Sharing Agreements with India

The Global Rundown

Farmers in Nepal claim water-sharing treaties with India are leaving them without adequate water supply. Houston, Texas, wants voters to approve more than $1 billion in bonds to fund flood-control projects. A new study shows trends in U.S. surface water body area over the last 30 years. Kerala, India, declares drought in nine districts due to poor monsoon rains and water scarcity. Tokyo Olympic officials reaffirm their commitment to improving water quality at the marathon swimming and triathlon venue.

“We are going to put in place some special filtering screens in the water to shield any impurities. We think that’s probably one of the effective measures we can take.” –Toshiro Muto, the CEO of the organizing committee for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, in reference to improving water quality before the upcoming games. Last year, E.coli and fecal coliform bacteria were detected in the venue for marathon swimming and triathlon. The International Olympic Committee named water quality as one of Tokyo’s few problems. The New York Times

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By The Numbers

6,000 Number of rivers and streams that Nepal and India share. Several treaties divide the water between the two countries, but many Nepalese farmers feel the agreements allow India to divert an unfair portion of the water. Al Jazeera

9 Number of districts in Kerala, India, that were declared drought-hit due to water shortages and poor monsoon rains. Government officials warn that the districts will likely experience acute drinking water shortages during peak summer months. The New Indian Express

Science, Studies, And Reports

A study by the University of Oklahoma analyzed changes in U.S. surface water body area from 1984 to 2016. Researchers found that 10 water-poor states had decreasing amounts of surface water over the 32-year period, while 20 water-rich states saw an increase in available surface water. Science Daily

On The Radar

Officials in Harris County, Texas, where the city of Houston is located, want voters to approve $1 billion to $2 billion in bonds to fund a variety of flood-control projects. Last summer, Hurricane Harvey caused $125 billion in damages across Texas and flooded thousands of homes in Harris County. The bond election will be held in either June or November. The New York Times

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