Saturday, October 15, 2011

Water Water- Controlling Bottle Neck

Brahma Chellaney from Project Syndicate: Artical about China’s rise as a hydro-hegemon with no modern historical parallel.
...Asia’s water map fundamentally changed after the 1949 Communist victory in China. Most of Asia’s important international rivers originate in territories that were forcibly annexed to the People’s Republic of China. The Tibetan Plateau, for example, is the world’s largest freshwater repository and the source of Asia’s greatest rivers, including those that are the lifeblood for mainland China and South and Southeast Asia. Other such Chinese territories contain the headwaters of rivers like the Irtysh, Illy, and Amur, which flow to Russia and Central Asia.
This makes China the source of cross-border water flows to the largest number of countries in the world. Yet China rejects the very notion of water sharing or institutionalized cooperation with downriver countries. … 
In addition, China has planned the “Great Western Route,” the proposed third leg of the Great South-North Water Diversion Project – the most ambitious inter-river and inter-basin transfer program ever conceived – whose first two legs, involving internal rivers in China’s ethnic Han heartland, are scheduled to be completed within three years. The Great Western Route, centered on the Tibetan Plateau, is designed to divert waters, including from international rivers, to the Yellow River, the main river of water-stressed northern China, which also originates in Tibet.
...As with its territorial and maritime disputes with India, Vietnam, Japan, and others, China is seeking to disrupt the status quo on international-river flows. Persuading it to halt further unilateral appropriation of shared waters has thus become pivotal to Asian peace and stability. Otherwise, China is likely to emerge as the master of Asia’s water taps, thereby acquiring tremendous leverage over its neighbors’ behavior.  Keep reading.
Feeding more than a billion people not easy, water is the Source of life all things. Building a huge dam for custodian of water more than just worrisome. What if the drought and dam gone bust?  In history, most of great civilizations were built along side of rivers, all the modern big cities along with rivers. Prosperity and ruinous civilizations are all based water.