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Europe ready for water wars?

April 22, 2008 at 2:03 pm

We’ve heard of war being fought over things like oil, diamonds and gold but not something such as water. It seems that Europe is poised on the brink of what is being coined a Water War and it’s another environmental concern for us all.

Water supplies in Barcelona are at an all-time low. This has meant the Catalans have had to look to their neighbours in France for help. They have looked at other means, such as diverting nearby rivers and desalinating the water, but in their worst drought in decades it looks as though they will have to resort to importing supplies.

Marseille would be the source of what is only a small amount of water at the moment but the French have yet to decide on a price and could end up charging them as much as they liked as crops and inhabitants run dry.

War over water is not something history has seen all that often. Climate change is a real problem for us though. It’s making headlines almost everyday and is always in the public domain. It might be something as essential as water supplies that cause fall-outs between neighbouring countries. This has already been seen with Israel and Palestine, as the latter depends on the former, who own over 90% of the region’s water supplies.

The same tension is occurring between Syria, Iraq and Turkey and in that case there are special dams being erected to contain the water and forbid their neighbours access to it. It’s doubtful that Spain and France would ever come to actual blows over water but it’s still an issue we should all be aware of and one that might mean we have to call on the help of others.

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