Is Asia Running Out of Water? Could this be the next Oil Crisis?

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posted on Sep, 15 2004 @ 08:09 AM
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In what could become a total disaster if left unchecked, Asian farmers are rapidly depleting water supplies. India according to the article is the worst off and has already sunk more than 21 million deep wells in an effort to pump out more water. Electrical use is causing blackouts because more than 50% of some areas electricity is being used to pump the water. Experts are prediciting that agricultural areas will gradualy become deserts as the water grows scarce. China is also at risk and will soon become totaly dependant on wheat imports to feed its population.

So what happens when the water runs out? Well either people die, or they go looking for more. That may bring on a global conflict as countries like China look to expanding thier territory simply to gain access to more and more water.



Scientists are warning that Asian farmers are drying up the continent's underground reserves by drilling millions of pump-operated wells to draw out water.

The London-based New Scientist magazine reported on Wednesday that that underground reserves were being depleted so alarmingly that fields might now turn into deserts.

"This little-heralded crisis is repeating itself across Asia and could cause widespread famine in the decades to come," the magazine said in a report on scientists' findings at a recent water conference in Sweden.

The country worst affected is India. There, small farmers have abandoned traditional shallow wells where bullocks draw water in leather buckets to drill 21 million tube wells hundreds of metres below the surface using technology adapted from the oil industry.

Indian nightmare

Another million wells a year are coming into operation in India to irrigate rice and sugar cane fields round the clock.

While the $600 pumps have brought short-term prosperity to many and helped to make India a major rice exporter in less than a generation, future implications are dire, New Scientist said.

"So much water is being drawn from underground reserves that they, and the pumps they feed, are running dry, turning fields that have been fecund for generations into desert," it said.

Asian water issues




posted on Sep, 15 2004 @ 08:55 AM
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well in Australia, particularly NSW drinking water is beginning to get dangerously low atm. Our biggest dam which supplies sydney is down to 40%!
damn droughts.

thanks,
drfunk



posted on Sep, 15 2004 @ 10:09 AM
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Originally posted by drfunk
well in Australia, particularly NSW drinking water is beginning to get dangerously low atm. Our biggest dam which supplies sydney is down to 40%!
damn droughts.



Don't worry, rich countries will have no water problems (the could even make it from salt water), the problem will be with overpopulated 3rd world countries.



posted on Sep, 15 2004 @ 05:39 PM
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Originally posted by longbow
Don't worry, rich countries will have no water problems (the could even make it from salt water), the problem will be with overpopulated 3rd world countries.


Thats the problem. The US will be okay. esp if the scale back farming to just cover the states. However, other countries may be forced to go to war in order to secure water. Countries with will have to defend and its gonna be ugly.



posted on Sep, 15 2004 @ 05:43 PM
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If we will go to war over oil, we will definitely go to war over something we need to live on.



posted on Sep, 15 2004 @ 05:45 PM
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Wow, im scared to think whats going to happend when the U.S tries to claim the Great Lakes for themselves. Us Canadians won't put up much of a fight at all. Thats why im glad the U.S is rich and can afford desalinization methods to turn salt water back into fresh water, thank you technology again.



posted on Sep, 15 2004 @ 05:48 PM
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Well we could sell our surplus water on to other countries I cant wait till it reaches $40.00 a barrel.
.



posted on Sep, 15 2004 @ 05:49 PM
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Originally posted by valkeryie
If we will go to war over oil, we will definitely go to war over something we need to live on.


Its a given! While we need oil for our toys, the bottom line is that we need water. Without water there is no food either. Food and water are the MOST basic human needs period. It is very scary when you think of the rapidly expanding India (with no population controll) and China which is trying but still has a huge population. At some point they overtax thier water systems and then go looking for more.



[edit on 15-9-2004 by FredT]



posted on Sep, 15 2004 @ 05:51 PM
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Originally posted by Linux
Wow, im scared to think whats going to happend when the U.S tries to claim the Great Lakes for themselves. Us Canadians won't put up much of a fight at all. Thats why im glad the U.S is rich and can afford desalinization methods to turn salt water back into fresh water, thank you technology again.


Don't worry, us Michiganders generally like you Canucks. We'd rather share it with you than let the Californians make their pipeline.

Here's a deal, you help us with California, and we'll help you with Quebec



posted on Sep, 15 2004 @ 05:53 PM
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to have a texan at the helm. Not on my watch big John W would be proud.



posted on Sep, 15 2004 @ 06:14 PM
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Originally posted by Esoterica
Here's a deal, you help us with California, and we'll help you with Quebec


Heh, see what happens when we Californians take away your broadband, processors, and artichokes


Don't forget our secret weapon: The Governator!



posted on Sep, 15 2004 @ 06:20 PM
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I've been reading about how China is trying to get to the moon and other accomplishments of prestige. My chief argument was that they had much more pressing problems to worry about other than that.

This thread kind of highlights that. I really think 'resource' wars will be the chief threat to the world as others have mentioned.



posted on Sep, 15 2004 @ 06:28 PM
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Originally posted by Weller
This thread kind of highlights that. I really think 'resource' wars will be the chief threat to the world as others have mentioned.


You do have a point. Prestige programs like space flight (look we can do it to) when basic needs are not being met is a problem. Look at the projections for the world population versus the declines in food production and potable water. If the midwest of the US was hit by a huge drought, not only would the US be in trouble, but alot of the world as well given the amount of food that is exported worldwide. I like the resourcce wars term. I think it sums up the topic well. I think we are focused so much on oil (no doubt it is important) we are ignoring the obvious one staring us in the face.



posted on Sep, 15 2004 @ 06:29 PM
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Pure water can be made from seawater it just takes a lot of power to do it.



posted on Sep, 15 2004 @ 06:57 PM
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Originally posted by ufo3
Pure water can be made from seawater it just takes a lot of power to do it.


True, but alot of these countries are already net importers of oil Esp China. I am ignorant about Indias power system, but the article mention blackouts from just pumping water. The desalination plants (unless solar) would require way more in the way of fossile fuels or nuclear power to do it without impacting everything else.



posted on Sep, 15 2004 @ 11:31 PM
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Originally posted by FredT

Originally posted by Weller
This thread kind of highlights that. I really think 'resource' wars will be the chief threat to the world as others have mentioned.


You do have a point. Prestige programs like space flight (look we can do it to) when basic needs are not being met is a problem. Look at the projections for the world population versus the declines in food production and potable water. If the midwest of the US was hit by a huge drought, not only would the US be in trouble, but alot of the world as well given the amount of food that is exported worldwide. I like the resourcce wars term. I think it sums up the topic well. I think we are focused so much on oil (no doubt it is important) we are ignoring the obvious one staring us in the face.


Agreed. It would be different if country's were working together to reach space in order to tap the natural resources that meteors and other planets have to offer but to go to the moon is simply a waste of time overall.



posted on Sep, 15 2004 @ 11:34 PM
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my bet is that canada will become, like saudi arabia because of its fresh water supply (biggest in the world) but it depends on how well other countried do to industrialize, if they take long the water wil run out, but if they industialize quickly, then they can recycle their water





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