The Stream, March 20: Water Shortages Could Affect 5bn People by 2050, UN Report Claims

The Global Rundown

A UN report warns that water shortages could affect 5 billion people by 2050. The U.S. Supreme Court rules that residents of Flint, Michigan, can proceed with two class-actions lawsuits over lead contamination. Data shows that Lake Chad is shrinking at an increasingly fast rate. Vietnam grapples with water pollution and mismanagement. Grand Canyon National Park heightens water use restrictions after a series of pipeline breaks. UNESCO says more investment is needed in “green” water management systems.

“Green solutions can meet several water management solutions at the same time — improving water management, while also reducing floods or droughts. Improving access to water.” –Stefan Uhlenbrook, coordinator of UNESCO’s World Water Assessment Program, in reference to the need for “greener” water infrastructure. The importance of sustainable water management was one of the major themes of a new UNESCO study, which is being presented at this week’s world water conference. Voice of America

Latest WaterNews from Circle of Blue

What’s Up With Water – March 19, 2018 – “What’s Up With Water” condenses the need-to-know news on the world’s water into a snapshot for the start of the workweek. Listen to this week’s edition to hear coverage on Russian cyberattacks, hydropower projects in Europe, and microplastics in bottled water.

HotSpots H2O, March 19: Spotlight on Eastern Ukraine  – Civilian water infrastructure has been targeted repeatedly during eastern Ukraine’s four-year conflict.

By The Numbers

70 percent Amount of Vietnam’s water that comes from outside the country. The water-stressed country, which struggles with water pollution, exploitation, and mismanagement, is struggling to find sustainable ways to address the resource crisis. Relief Web

30 million Number of people in Central Africa who rely on water from Lake Chad. The lake has lost 90 percent of its surface area in the last 100 years, and data shows it is shrinking at an increasingly fast rate. Al Jazeera

In context: International Conference Discusses Remedies to Lake Chad Crisis.

Science, Studies, And Reports

A new report by the United Nations warns that 5 billion people could suffer water shortages by 2050 due to climate change, increased demand, and polluted waterways. The World Water Development Report, released this week, notes that the global demand for water has increased sixfold in the last 100 years, and is predicted to grow at a rate of 1 percent each year. The Guardian

On The Radar

The U.S. Supreme Court will allow residents of Flint, Michigan, to pursue two class-action lawsuits against local and state officials over lead contamination in the city’s water supply. The Court ruled that the civil rights claims were not precluded by the Safe Drinking Water Act, which has its own provisions for citizens to file suit over unsafe water. The New York Times

In context: Circle of Blue’s coverage of the Flint water crisis.

Arizona’s Grand Canyon National Park is imposing heightened water-use restrictions and conservation measures after a series of pipeline breaks supplying the park’s South Rim. The park will remain in “conservation mode” until water storage tanks reach sustainable levels, according to park officials. The New York Times

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