Left: November 9, 1984. Right: November 28, 2011. The Dead Sea lies in the Jordan Rift Valley, bordering Jordan, Israel and the West Bank. It is one of the world’s saltiest bodies of water, too salty to harbor any life other than bacteria. Minerals from the sea, however, are extracted for various industrial purposes. Mineral evaporation ponds have replaced open water in the southern part of the sea, as can be seen in the 2011 image. In recent decades, the Dead Sea has shrunk as water has been diverted from the Jordan River, the sea’s main tributary. A plan has been announced to replenish the Dead Sea by building a canal from the Red Sea, providing fresh (desalinated) water to Jordan en route.
1984 image taken by the Thematic Mapper sensor onboard Landsat 5. 2011 image taken by the Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus sensor onboard Landsat 7. Source: USGS Landsat Missions Gallery, “The Dead Sea,” U.S. Department of the Interior / U.S. Geological Survey.
De eerste interactieve Disputed Waters webdocumentaire gemaakt met de nieuwe Klynt software.
Volg Disputed Waters op een reis langs de Mekong en luister naar de verhalen van de bewoners lie leven met de veranderingen in het water in de afgelopen 10 jaar. De webdocumentaire is nog in beta versie, dus als het laden wat stroef gaat, nog even geduld aub.
Major cities in Asia are growing at top speed. The members of the new middle class are massively buying scooters. Their first step towards the holy cow of civilization: the car. Trafic during rush hour in Saigon is still moving at a pleasant speed. This will be over when all these drivers can afford a car.
Little is left of the Jordan River. Most of the water is diverted for irrigating farmlands and supplying cities. Few rivers have spawned conflict like the Jordan River has. Years of below average rainfall forced the bordering countries to search for alternative sources. The ultimate project is a proposed conveyance system between the Red Sea and Dead Sea. ‘It is the only major project in which Israel, the Palestine Authorities and Jordan cooperate.’
Wether they own half an acre of land or massive farms of thousands of acres. The farmers of Egypt all have to work with the same problem: water scarcity. In a country that is 95% desert, water becomes a more precious resource than anywhere else in the world. And these farmers themselves know best how carelessly the rest of the Egyptians treat it. The Nile, when it reaches the Mediterranean is one of the most polluted rivers in the world. The water has been used several times by farmers, industry and cities. It contains high quantities of pesticides, fertilizers, heavy metals and other industrial and city waste.
Still the delta farmers have one of the highest yields per hectare in the world. Proof of the fertility of the soil.
Farmer Mr. Mohammad Al Sahour near his farm in the Nile River Delta. He is unhappy because no clean river water reaches his fields. He needs to irrigate with waste water from a drainage canal.
Click on the image for more farmers and fishermen.
The Egyptian Nile delta is one of the most fertile areas in the world. Therefore it is no wonder that this region has been used for intensive farming for decades. Although the Nile delivers a constant flow of fresh water, farmers will have to improve the rate of efficiency of their irrigation.
Millions and millions of small farmers establish the backbone of Egypt`s farming sector. Only a few dozen of large agricultural companies produce on a professional level that is comparable to European standards. According to some people, the future of Egypt`s agriculture lies in the desert. Others disagree. All agree, though, on one aspect: water for agriculture is scarce. And it is getting scarcer.
20 million then, 80 million nowadays, 150 million in the near future. Egypt’s population is exploding. All these people have to share the same amount of water, that mainly comes from Egypt’s lifeline the Nile. According to a recent study, Egypt’s demand for water will exceed the supply in 2017. How to avoid such a situation? Will there be enough water for all?
Egypt and Ethiopia have some of the fastest growing populations in the world. Both countries went from 20 million in the 1950s to 80 million now and 150 million inhabitants in the near future. Almost all these people depend on from the Nile for their surival. The previous Egyptian Water Minister even threatened with a water war, should Ethiopia build a dam in the Nile. The struggle for survival has begun.