Golf clubs voluntarily ripping up their fairways, new housing developments without gardens, and water police patrolling the streets.
This is Las Vegas 2008 – see Matthew Price’s BBC drought diary here and read more about what other countries are doing to conserve water.
Meanwhile a South Australian Government official says the government has no plans to harvest stormwater. That revelation came on Wednesday afternoon – shortly afterwards a media report stated that the CSIRO’s chief water scientist, Dr Bill Young, had said there was enough water in New South Wales Menindee Lakes to release some to environmental flows. According to Dr Young this would have a “definately postive” impact on the dying lower lakes.
However, premier Mike Rann has stated he would be one day dubbed the most negligent premier in the state if he released storagres from Menindee Lakes for the environment. The water is needed for “critical human needs”.
I continue to wonder, during all these discussions, debates and pleas, if the mouth is left to die won’t the problems slowly travel up the river? A new pipeline has been recently approved to pump water from the River at Tailem Bend to Lower Lakes irrigators – will this pipeline have to continue to be moved up the river?
Just before going to sleep last night I was ranting to my husband about over allocation of rivers worldwide (I’m sure he brought it up). He quickly broke through my rant with the following exchange:
Me: ….and it’s only because the states aren’t using their full allocations that it’s not an environmental disaster……do you know what an acre-foot is?
Him: “Yeah, it’s when you drop a heavy brick on your foot and you say “ahhh my aching foot”.
Me: Dissolves into laughter
Him: “I thought you needed a gigglelitre”
PS. For those who care – one million acre-feet of water is equivilant to 1233.5 gigalitres
The Nile, the Colorado River, the Ganges and the Yellow River – some of the largest rivers in the world are also the most susceptible to mismanagement and over allocation.
Irrigation is a historical practice – the Chinese have been irrigating since the third century BC and ancient Roman aqueducts that dot the European landscape are still used today.
However, rapid population growth and the need for greater food stocks at a global level has seen some of the world’s largest and most important river systems depleted to shadows of their former selves.
Read the full report here.
Posted in Local news
Tagged Aral Sea, Colorado River, environment, Ganges, irrigation, Murray River, natural resources, Nile, over allocation, rivers, Yellow River