Water conflicts

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  • Publicado : 6 de diciembre de 2011
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Discuss the extent to which Serageldin’s claim that “The wars of the next century will be fought over water” can be justified. Illustrate your answer with specific examples from your research. Fresh water is a limited resource; it can be found in several parts of our ecosystem, the fauna, flora and agriculture. World population growth, climate change and pollution are factors contributing to arapid decrease in the amount of water. Water also is in the economy of a country, because it helps to improve or deteriorate the sanitation of a nation. From last century, water scarcity had been theme in international politics agenda. Serageldin and other politicians are looking to create a water management culture through making awareness of possibility of a water conflict could occur during thiscentury. A possibility of a water conflict occurs in the Middle East and Africa could be high, because that area is the aridity zone of the world. However, the nations have been doing remarkable efforts in order to resolve any conflict water related. Water conflicts could occur in this century as had occurred in the past, unless governments, private enterprises and civil society work together withthe purpose of finding different mechanisms of solutions for manage the use of water resources. This paper is divided in three parts, the first explains water conflicts and how they had been solved with bilateral cooperation, the second one deals with water management, public and private sector and civil society roles, and the third one is the conclusion with the final thoughts. Water conflictsand resolutions A water conflict has two main attributes, one is the essence and the other is the level of impact. Wolf (2005) explains as essence three possible reasons, quality, quantity and timing. Quality refers to causes of water pollution; quantity the amount of water in a region or specific location, and the last one is the timing of water flow. The other characteristic is aboutinternational, national or local level of impact. International is between two or more countries; national is between states, provinces, ethnics or economic sectors and local apply to neighboring cities in the same state. During the analysis of water conflicts, these figures provide evidence in order to look for the correct stakeholders and method of resolution. According to Wolf (2007), in the United Statesof America the University of Oregon has carried out a research in some dry countries about their water management practices. The research found out that both institutional and informal forms of cooperation exist among those countries. The study also discovered that there are two potential causes for a water-related dispute: the first is when one of those countries would start some constructionproject, change the basin or make a policy decision on a shared reservoir without consulting the other country involved; the second is when there are no organizations that would prevent such construction to be carried out or such decision to be made.

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However their exist different organizations around the world, which helps in the resolution of any water conflict, as a occurreduntil now. Water as basic element for live has become a fundamental piece in international negotiations and a military strategy in another kind of wars, however, according to United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization more than 400 water agreements have been done from 1820 as mentioned Wolf (1998). This is an example of how water can be in any political negotiations, but it has not been thefundamental reason of the war, and also with cooperation between countries a water conflict can be avoided as have been solved. These agreements have been signed in different international organizations, irrespective of Seralgeldin (2007) and Wolf (1998), who say that it is necessary to have an international organization which provides a legal framework for regulating the consumption and...
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