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Senegal Establishes "Pôle Eau Dakar" To Promote Regional Hydrodiplomacy

DAKAR, Senegal

In preparation for hosting the 9th World Water Forum in 2021, the city of Dakar, Senegal has formally launched the Pôle Eau Dakar (Dakar Water Hub). This organisation, which is attached to the Ministry of Water and Sanitation, will serve as a hub in order to mobilise various networks and to promote hydrodiplomatic issues in the region. It will also take a leading role regarding the follow-up of recommendations stemming from the Forum whose theme is “water security for sustainable development and peace”.


Kashmir Situation Is A Water Situation, Indus Treaty Challenged


Pakistan authorities August 19 warned that release of water from an upstream dam may cause flooding in Pakistan’s Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provinces.


"Water Diplomacy Talks": "Water And Violence: The Euphrates"


Diana Philip, Senior Research Manager for international think-tank Strategic Foresight Group (SFG) speaks with David Duncan, Publisher, OOSKAnews in this (LINK) "Water Diplomacy Talks" audio interview.

This OOSKAnewscast was recorded on the occasion of the release of SFG’s seventh "Blue Peace Bulletin", "Water and Violence: The Euphrates", which can be DOWNLOADED HERE. This Bulletin examines the region around the Euphrates River and the possible role that it could play in finding a future solution in Syria.

Philip discusses the historic and current significance of the river to transnational issues and internal conflict in Syria; difficulties posed by the complexity of conflict in Syria; the role of state actors and non-state actors in the country; a histroical analogy with Europe's Rhine River; the Euphrates as a potential zone for descalation of violence in Syria. Philip is a lawyer who works as Senior Research Manager for SFG, heading initiatives on public international law, hydro-diplomacy, conflict, terrorism and global foresight issues. She has an LL.M from Harvard Law School with a concentration in Human Rights. SFG is an international think-tank engaged in crafting new policy concepts that enable decision makers to prepare for a future in uncertain times. SFG's body of work encompasses over 50 countries, across four continents. SFG pioneered the “Blue Peace” concept to use water as a tool to promote peace and security in the world.

Further Reading: Other SFG “Blue Peace Bulletins” can be DOWNLOADED HERE


Ukraine Rejects Negotiations With Russia Over Dnieper Water Supply To Crimea

KYIV, Ukraine

Efforts by leadership of the Russia-occupied Crimea region of Ukraine to access waters of the Dnieper River have been met with short shrift by the government of Ukraine.


"Water Diplomacy Talks" - Professor Asit Biswas

GLASGOW, Scotland

Professor Asit K. Biswas, one of the world’s leading authorities on water, is in conversation with David Duncan, Publisher, OOSKAnews in this (LINK) "Water Diplomacy Talks" audio interview.

Professor Biswas and Duncan met in Scotland this month, where Biswas is Distinguished Visiting Professor at the University of Glasgow. The conversation includes the Professor’s thoughts on the “Scotland, Hydro-Nation” initiative; the role of nation states in addressing national and international global water challenges and opportunities; the mixed history of international institutions in hydropolitics / hydrodiplomacy, and big-picture thinking; whether there is a water crisis, or a water management crisis / opportunity. Professor Biswas reflects on his experiences in these areas and more, and offers thoughts about how the world has managed water historically, how it manages water now, and how that management could improve.

Biswas is founder of the Third World Centre for Water Management in Mexico, and currently is Distinguished Visiting Professor at the University at the Lee Kuan Yew School for Public Policy in Singapore, University of Wuhan, China, and Indian Institute of Technology, Bhubaneswar, India, as well as his position at Glasgow University.

He has been a senior advisor to 19 governments, six Heads of the United Nations Agencies, the Secretary General of OECD, and many other international and national organisations.


500 Million Threatened By Desertification

GENEVA, Switzerland

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released a new special report on climate change and land use August 8, part of a series of such examinations authorized by the United Nations designed to assist governments in understanding the effects of climate change and necessary policy decisions.

The report, prepared by international experts from 52 countries, examines land use and its degradation. The panel identifies increased desertification and emphasizes that climate change is creating additional stress on land use.


European Commission Supports Drought Relief In Horn Of Africa


The European Commission is mobilizing a further $56 Million USD in emergency humanitarian funding to help people in the Horn of Africa, where prolonged drought is having devastating consequences on food availability and livelihoods.


US Secretary Of State Wades Into Mekong

PHNOM PENH, Cambodia

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has criticized China's dam-building programme on the Mekong River, saying that construction has left the crucial waterway at its lowest level in a decade in Southeast Asian countries downstream, warning of "troubling trends".

The Mekong River Commission has said that river levels in June and July had dropped to “among the lowest on record”.


July Hottest Month Ever; Human Impact Contributes; Greenland Melts; Europe Burns

GENEVA, Switzerland

World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and Copernicus Climate Change Programme data indicates that July 2019 equalled, if not surpassed, the hottest month on record. June was also the hottest June on record. This is particularly significant insofar as there was an absence of an El Niño effect this year, that normally raises global temperatures.

The data, issued August 1, suggests 2015 through 2019 will be the five hottest years on record.


India Centralizes Inter-state Water Dispute Resolution Process


The government of India's lower parliamentary house has passed a bill to amend the country's Inter-State River Water Disputes Act. The purpose of the amendment to 1956 legislation is to address shortcomings that have led to lengthy proceedings and, often, no resolution of ongoing disputes.


US National Security Undermined By Administration's Denial Of Climate Science

NEW YORK NY, United States

A former senior analyst in the Bureau of Intelligence and Research at the United States State Department has defended his decision to resign last month from his job examining impacts of climate change on national security.

In June, Dr Rod Schoonover's written testimony to the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence was blocked by the White House on the basis that the scientific evidence in the analysis was at “odds” with the “administration’s position on climate change".

US President Donald Trump's statements about climate change have been remarkably skeptical about accepted science regarding climate change causes and impacts.


Iraq, Turkey Meet On Dams, Shared Water Resource Imperatives


Meeting Turkish envoy Veysel Eroglu July 31 in Baghdad, Iraq President Barham Salih confirmed that the two countries’ water issues are shared priorities, and that a long-term solution that guaranteed the rights of both parties was required.


Killings Of Water Activists Quadrupled In 2018

LONDON, United Kingdom

Human rights watch-dog Global Witness has launched its 2018 annual investigative report on attacks on "defenders" of land and environmental rights. 

According to "Enemies of the State? How governments and business silence land and environmental defenders", killings of activists linked to the defense of water resources rose across the globe last year, with reported incidents rising from four in 2017 to seventeen in 2018.

Often the aggressor is a company’s private security apparatus but state enforcement agencies and contract killers have worked in cooperation with private firms, Global Witness reports.


GERD: Tripartite Talks To Resume; Dam Is Defended By Israeli Weaponry

CAIRO, Egypt

Ethiopia Foreign Minister Gedu Andargachew has expressed his country’s enthusiasm to strengthen bilateral relations with Egypt and a commitment to resume negotiations on the contentious, and massive, Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) on the River Nile.

At a Cairo meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi last week, Gedu delivered a message from Ethiopia Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed communicating Ethiopia’s resolve to resume tripartite talks on GERD – which are expected to focus on implementation of the declaration of principles regarding water fills and operation of the dam.

Al-Sisi on this part reportedly returned greetings to Abiy Ahmed and expressed “hope for promoting various aspects of bilateral partnership between both sides”. Egypt has historically been particularly critical of the dam’s construction, arguing that it will reduce its legitimate share of River Nile water access, and thus threaten its water security.

The exchange of goodwill comes soon after, and perhaps in spite of, reports in Arab and Israeli media that Israeli firms, in May this year, installed an advanced “Spyder-MR” air defense system for GERD on behalf of Ethiopia, in the face of objections from the highest levels of Egypt’s government. There has been no official comment on these reports from the governments involved.


UNEP And Panama Canal To Collaborate On Climate Action, Sustainability


A new collaboration between UN Environment (UNEP) and the Panama Canal Authority will develop programmes and research, human resource training and knowledge sharing in order to advance efforts on sustainable development and combating climate change.


Blue Peace Bulletin - "Protection Of Water: Local Solutions"


Niranjana Menon, Research Analyst with international think-tank Strategic Foresight Group (SFG) speaks with David Duncan, Publisher, OOSKAnews in this (LINK) "Water Diplomacy Talks" audio interview.

This OOSKAnewscast was recorded on the occasion of the release of SFG’s sixth Blue Peace Bulletin, "Protection Of Water: Local Solutions", which can be DOWNLOADED HERE.


Since the advent of human conflict, various forms of conflict resolution methods have been created in different countries, from traditional means of resolving disputes through the assistance of village elders and local leaders, to more formal means such as signing of water-sharing agreements. It is imperative to analyze the positive impact of traditional conflict resolutions mechanisms in order to understand the manner in which similar local solutions can be adopted to prevent or curb other localized disputes.

The latest Blue Peace Bulletin describes instances where people have had faith in traditional means of conflict resolution over water related disputes as compared to established international practices, outlining circumstances where traditional means of conflict resolution may be favored. Bulletin author Niranjana Menon is a Research Analyst with the Strategic Foresight Group (SFG). She works on water diplomacy in the Middle East region. Prior to joining SFG, Niranjana worked with the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations (FAO), wherein she undertook research and analyses on Indian legislation and relevant regulations on agriculture, environment, forestry, water and natural resources and prepared research papers on contract farming in India and labor laws in the forestry sector. She holds an LLM in “International Trade Law, Contracts and Dispute Resolution” from the ILO affiliated International Training Centre (University of Turin) and an LLB from Government Law College (University of Mumbai) and has interned with the International Institute for the Unification of Private Law (UNIDROIT). While at UNIDROIT, Menon published a paper on “Insolvency of Intermediaries in Cross-Border Holding Systems” with the Oxford University Press.

New Data Enhances Accuracy Of Global River Maps

TOKYO, Japan

Research studies of river hydrology and hydrodynamics can now be enhanced by new hydrography data developed by scientists at the University of Tokyo and released earlier this month.



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