Ethiopia is currently building an enormous dam for power and irrigation on the Blue Nile. If our distant ancestors could figure it out, it stands to reason we can. The result is that Israeli settlers on the West Bank get access to liters of water a day, leaving the Palestinians only 75 liters a day.
Not only is bottled water expensive, and often inferior in quality to local water sources, the plastic it necessitates adds to a growing pollution problem.
Even Europe is struggling with some rivers dropping so low as to hinder shipping. And, many times, those deep wells draw in pollution from the water table that makes the water impossible to drink or use on crops.
Iraq underlines its long historical use of the Tigris and Euphrates water resources as the basis for its rights to sufficient access to these waters. Israeli settlers get an extra 60 liters a day, leaving the Palestinians only 75 liters a day.
And according to the World Bank, Israel also takes 87 percent of the West Bank aquifers, leaving the Palestinians only 13 percent. As water is the most fundamental and crucial resource to sustain life, the seriousness of water shortages in Iraq inflicted by Turkey and Syria cannot be underestimated.
The matter in dispute? But with climate change accelerating, the issue of water — or the lack thereof — is going to get worse, not better, and resolving the problems will take more than bilateral treaties about sharing.
A number of droughts in Iraq in recent years has increased the likelihood of conflict in the future as years of duress caused by water shortages are making the Iraqi people increasingly desperate.