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Photo Slideshow: City of Coal on the Inner Mongolia Steppe

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Xilinhot — an Inner Mongolian outpost of 177,000 residents, separated from Beijing by a 12-hour train ride — is at the center of the Xilin Gol Grassland, one of China's largest prairies and livestock production regions. The north's coal mines, trucks, and power plants are representative of the nation's coal dependency, a lifeline with an insatiable thirst for water
Mongolia Slideshow

Energy Economy Brings Change to Shepherd Life: Modernization Comes to the Dry Grasslands of Inner Mongolia

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Along the vast frozen grasslands, 23-year-old Wu Yun and her father, Bao Zhu, tend their flock of sheep and cattle. Just over the ridge, the northern city of Xilinhot is booming as the coal industry continues to expand. But it will take a lot of water to feed both the city and the mining.
Shanghai Drought

Rains Bring Relief For Six-Month China Drought, But Chronic Water Problems Loom

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Although now satiated, the dry spell is the latest in a growing trend of severe water shortages threatening China's food production, energy generation, and accelerating modernization.

Perspective: Waters, Wars, Wheat, Watts, Waste and Wasta Add Up to Syria's Liquid Worries

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Syria's economics, history, politics, diplomacy, and culture have often been defined in a large part by water. This has been the case since this area was part of the Eblan civilization, or about 2500 BC, onward. But let's look at some more recent facts and events.