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US Congress Set For Bipartisan Water Resources Infrastructure Agreement

WASHINGTON DC

House and Senate Committee leaders yesterday announced a bipartisan, bicameral agreement on comprehensive water resources infrastructure legislation, which could be considered on the House floor later this week.

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More Afghans Displaced By Drought Than Conflict, UN says

GENEVA

A total of 275,000 people have been displaced by drought in western Afghanistan - 52,000 more than the number uprooted by conflict this year - with over two million threatened by the effects of water shortages, the United Nations said.

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Michigan Officials Defend Approval Of Controversial Nestle Water Extraction Permit

EVART

For the first time, the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality is commenting on why the controversial Nestle water permit was approved. Nestle is pumping out 400 gallons of water from the Great Lakes each minute, and the state is only charging $200 per year.

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Imran Khan Adds His Voice To Calls For Expat Funding For Dam Construction

LAHORE, Pakistan

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has described the ongoing water crisis to be the biggest issue for the country.

In a televised address last week Imran said that he has been taking presentations in the last 2 weeks on issues faced by the country and said that a ministry would be formed which would work towards resolving the water crisis.

Ethiopia Police Declare GERD Dam Manager’s Death Was Suicide

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia

The head of Ethiopia’s Federal Police Commission announced September 7 that the shooting death of Simegnew Bekele, who was found dead in his vehicle in Addis Ababa in July was a suicide. “The investigation (into the death of the project manager of the $4 Billion USD Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD)) reveals that he used his own gun and killed himself", Zeynu Jamal said.

Water Sector Is "Starting Point" For EIB Sustainability Awareness Bond

LUXEMBOURG, Luxembourg

The European Investment Bank (EIB) issued its first Sustainability Awareness Bond September 6. The $578 Million USD (EUR 500 Million) funding builds on the EIB’s pioneering role unlocking investment through green bonds, the development bank said.

Climate Change: "Far Too Many Leaders Have Refused To Listen", Says Guterres

New York, United States

United Nations Secretary General, António Guterres has called on global leaders to rein in climate change faster.

“If we do not change course by 2020, we risk missing the point where we can avoid runaway climate change,” Guterres said at United Nations headquarters in New York September 10.

Don't Swim In The Jordan - US Issues Disease Warning

Tel Aviv, Israel

Following August's leptospirosis outbreak in the Jordan River system in the Golan Heights region of northern Israel, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued September 7 a "Watch - Level 1, Practice Usual Precautions" alert for visitors to the region.

Harvard Endowment Fund Accused Of Land Grabs Causing Denial Of Indigenous People's Water Access

WASHINGTON, United States

An investigative report has accused Harvard University’s endowment fund of using an opaque corporate structure to acquire control of farmland across five continents during the past 10 years.

This mmonth's report by two non-profits supporting agrarian and social movements highlights case studies in Brazil where the endowment fund’s land acquisitions have been concentrated in the northeast region of the country. The farmland in this area is described as being grabbed at an alarming rate by agribusiness companies for the large-scale production of commodity crops like soybeans and sugarcane.

Iraq: Basra Crisis Worsens As Iran Consulate Attacked, Power Outages Hit

BASRA, Iraq

The International Committee of the Red Cross said September 11 that drinking water could soon run even lower in the southern Iraq city of Basra.

The main Wafa al-Qaed water treatment plant on the northern edge of Basra has been out of action due to a power outage since Friday and although other plants were able to supply some 40 percent of usual needs, the quality of the water was poor, the Red Cross said.

"This is an emergency situation. We need to restore the full supply," said spokeswoman Nada Doumani. She said she did not know the reason for the power cut.

Hospitals in Basra have seen an influx of patients suffering from diarrhea and various intestinal infections, with some 6,280 people being admitted to hospitals for treatment in the last 2 weeks alone.

Last week Basra’s health department released a water quality report stating that there is 100 percent chemical contamination and 50 percent bacterial contamination. Chlorine is not being used in treatment plants.

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi met September 10 with officials and tribal leaders in the Basra where violence has erupted since July, culminating in an attack on the consulate of Iran last week when 15 protesters were killed and city institutions burned.

World Bank Finances $350 Million USD For Tanzania Water, Sanitation

DAR ES SALAAM

The government has signed loan agreements worth over $800 Million USD with the World Bank to finance water and electricity projects in the country. Through the financing agreements, the World Bank will extend to the government $455 Million USD for the Tanzania Zambia Power Transmission Interconnector Project and $350 Million USD for Sustainable Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Program.

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Earthen Check Dams Built To Minimize Human-Elephant Conflict

RAIPUR

In a bid to minimise man and elephant conflict and enrich flora and fauna in Surajpur Forest Division of Chhattisgarh, at least 12 earthen check dams have been constructed inside the forests within two years. “Water body is the most important component to counter the effect of climate change. So our top priority is to increase water areas in Surajpur forest division.

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AIIB To Invest $270 Million USD In Bangladesh Clean Water, Sanitation Projects

BEIJING

The China-based Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) plans to invest $270 million in a Bangladesh clean water infrastructure project. The project aims to improve access to piped water and sanitation to municipalities with poor water quality.

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China-India Water Data Relationship Thaws

NEW DELHI

What a difference a year can make in China-India relations. Last year, China was blamed for a flood in northeastern India. This year, it is being praised for helping to minimise the damage. The early warning China issued to India in August on the rising waters of its Tsangpo river – which hit its highest level in 150 years – gave the Indian authorities enough time to prepare.

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Foam Contamination Found In Streams Around New Zealand Airport

PALMERSTON NORTH

Contamination from banned chemicals in firefighting foam at levels above safe drinking water guidelines has been found in streams around Palmerston North airport. Streams around Palmerston North airport are contaminated with firefighting foam chemicals at between three and 12 times the safe drinking water guidelines. All 23 soil samples tested above public land safety guidelines.

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Tanzania Prez Orders Investigation Into Acacia Mining Water Pollution

DAR ES SALAAM

Tanzanian President John Magufuli on September 7 ordered the east African nation's environment watchdog to probe pollution allegations against Acacia Mining's North Mara Gold Mine, saying a previous report that cleared the mine was tampered with.

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