Sunday, 27 June 2010

In the Nile?

A recent pact has been signed between five of the nine Nile basin countries. It seeks to redress an ancient imbalance whereby Egypt got to use 55 of the Nile's 84 billion cubic metres of extractable water. Unfortunately the pact excludes key countries including Egypt and Sudan.

While I understand that the countries which feel they are being hard done to want to increase the water available to them, I can also understand that Egypt, which cannot exist the Nile, will want to protect its interests. In fact I suspect that without resolution, this situation is far more dangerous than you might think. Egypt is the Nile, and they will probably go to war any day to protect their access. In once sense they have to. Sudan too is heavily dependent on its only major river.

What is the environmental message here? Not much, except to say that as consumption and populations increase (the Nile basin countries have some of the fastest growing populations in the world) these sort of tensions can only mount with resulting strain on nations and the environment as the pressure to extract all they can increases......

That's it.... short and pointless, but the Nile is a river which means something to me, so I thought I'd comment...

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