Can agricultural technology help deliver a sustainable food system?

Continue reading “Can agricultural technology help deliver a sustainable food system?”

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The QANAT July 3 to July 12

SUPPLY & SCARCITY

“Both India and China will face drop in the yield of wheat and rice anywhere between 30-50% by 2050. At the same time, demand for food grains will go up by at least 20%. As a net result, China and India alone will need to import more than 200-300 million tons of wheat and rice, driving up the international prices of these commodities in the world market.” The Taps Running Dry, Forbes India, 7/6/10

RESERVOIRS & FLOODING

“The municipal government has set up 900 tents, four toilets and tap water supply for the evacuated people from 2,000 families near the Wenquan Reservoir, said Zhu Jianping, Golmud mayor.” 9,000 evacuated from NW China city near risky reservoir, China Daily, 7/11/10

“Nearly 17.2 million residents in nine provinces were affected by flood-related disasters and 597,000 people were relocated from July 1 to 12 a.m. of July 10, the ministry said in its latest disaster relief update.” South China flood death toll reaches 50, China Daily, 7/11/10

“Engineers opened three sluice gates to discharge some 32,000 cubic meters of water per second and another sluice gate to release floating objects.” Three Gorges Dam discharges flood, China Daily, 7/11/10

“More than 27,370 hectares of farmland were flooded, 242 houses collapsed and at least 10,157 residents were evacuated from flooded homes, the disaster relief office of Hubei Provincial Civil Affairs Bureau said” China to battle storms following heat wave, China Daily, 7/9/10

 

“A massive aid relief operation in Mexico has brought aid to tens of thousands of people cut off by severe flooding.” Mexico rushes aid to flood victims, al Jazeera, 7/6/10

LAND GRABS

“Residents of Sebalang village, Lampung, have urged the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) to immediately name suspects in what they allege to be a case of illegal land grabbing for a steam-powered power plant (PLTU) project.….”The compensation of only Rp 500 *about 5 US cents* per square meter of land is inhumane. But we have no choice because we risk attracting violence,” Sebalang resident Rosihan said recently.” Residents left in the lurch after land grab, The Jakarta Post, 7/12/10

FAMINE
“… about 2.5 millions of  people in Niger are currently affected by food shortage.” Niger: The Silent Famine, Global Voices, 7/12/10

The QANAT: March 15-21

“…drought proves the central authorities have, until now, paid little attention to water conservation projects, said Bai Enpei, governor of Yunnan”  No end in sight to prolonged drought in southChina Daily
“We shouldn’t celebrate [big projects] as a triumph over nature,” Ma said. “We should humbly think about how we got cornered into such a situation.” As economy booms, China faces major water shortage Washington Post

 

“Twelve of the 14 cities in southern China’s Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region are affected by drought, the regional flood-control and drought relief authority announced Monday. ” Drought forecast to worsen in Guangxi China Daily
“The current soil conditions are still suitable for corn in the next 10 years. Then farmers can plant radishes, which are more salt-tolerant,” she said. “However, when radishes can’t be planted anymore after 10 years, what should they plant?” Wen asked.” Drought biggest threat to agriculture China Daily
“In March 2008, icy water flooded 11 villages and a township in Hangjin banner, causing the evacuation of around 13,000 people. About 20,000 homes were destroyed and more than 33,000 livestock died.” Workers race against thawing ice on Yellow River China Daily
“Much of Syria’s farmland is irrigated by flooding, which wastes water, instead of through pipes and tubes, Mr. Yazigi said. “Modernization of agriculture has been neglected.” Water Crisis Grips Syria New York Times
“Coupled with mismanagement of water resources, Pakistan’s woes are compounded by rising silt levels in Indus waters, deforestation and rising temperatures.” India links Pakistan’s concerns on water to ‘mismanagement’ Daily Times
“I’m concerned,” [President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono] said. “If the world fails to prevent the possibility of interest clashes in the search and control over food, energy and water resources, these aspects will become new sources of global conflict and prompt wars.” Food, energy security may spark conflict The Jakarta Post
“The local government has been rationing water to each household in the village since January, but just a meager amount, enough to keep everyone alive.” Waiting for a miracle called rain China Daily

 

“A family that makes $100 a month can spend as much as a quarter of that on water, which, elsewhere in Pakistan, costs pennies and flows out of household taps.”  Karachi ‘water mafia’ leaves Pakistanis parched and broke Los Angeles Times
“There is a real danger of governments signing up to the human right to water, without committing to the additional finance required by local government to deliver that right.” Another bad idea which we need to act on Global Water Intelligence