The Stream, October 17, 2019: Jakarta Continues to Sink Despite Groundwater Pumping Regulations

The Global Rundown

Despite improvements in groundwater levels, Jakarta, Indonesia, continues to sink. The death toll from Typhoon Hagibis rises to 66 in Japan. Data shows that Swiss glaciers are melting at record rates. Michigan proposes a bill that would require filtered water at all schools and daycares. Farmers in Australia urge the government to develop new drought policies.

“There is only one silver bullet for solving drought and that’s rain. There is no man-made panacea or policy solution. But, the NFF is strongly of the view we can do better than we have to date.” —Fiona Simson, president of Australia’s National Farmers’ Federation, in reference to a new drought policy framework advocated by the group. Members of the NFF say that the government must drop their “ad hoc” and reactive approach to drought, and instead work to develop a sustainable approach to future droughts. The country’s Labor party has also suggested a bipartisan “war cabinet” to respond to the current dry spell. The Guardian

In context: In Australia, Echoes of Past, Glimpses of Future As Country Braces for Hot, Dry Summer

Latest WaterNews from Circle of Blue

What’s Up With Water – October 14, 2019  — This week’s edition of What’s Up With Water includes coverage on Typhoon Hagibis in Japan, improvements to water infrastructure in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, and flood buyouts in the United States.

HotSpots H2O: Egypt and Ethiopia Spar Over Nile River Dam in Latest Round of Talks — Negotiations over how to fill and operate a controversial dam in Ethiopia are once again deadlocked after a tense back-and-forth. 

By The Numbers

12 centimeters (4.7 inches) Annual rate of land subsidence in northern parts of Jakarta, Indonesia, despite increased restrictions on groundwater extraction. Recently, the government announced plans to relocate the country’s capital from Jakarta to Borneo island due to the severity of land subsidence and overcrowding in Jakarta. Reuters

In context:
A Sinking Metropolis (published by The Wilson Quarterly)
Capital Flight? Indonesia Leader Suggests Moving Government Out of Sinking Jakarta
As Seas Rise, Unchecked Groundwater Use Sinks Coastal Cities

66 Latest death toll in Japan from Typhoon Hagibis, the worst to hit the country in years. Thousands of households are also without power and water in the aftermath of the disaster. Reuters

Science, Studies, and Reports

One-tenth of volume has been lost from 20 Swiss glaciers over the past five years, according to research by the Cryospheric Commission at the Swiss Academy of Sciences. The melt rate is the fastest since record-keeping began more than a century ago. Al Jazeera

In context: Mountain Regions, ‘Taking the Heat,’ Face Growing Hazards As Ice Melts, UN Climate Panel Warns  

On the Radar

A new bipartisan bill introduced this week would require all schools and day care centers in Michigan to be equipped with filtered water fountains or filling stations. The legislation also calls for annual testing and the development of a drinking water safety plans. MLive

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