/ INTERNATIONAL NEWS
Wise management of water could reduce future food crises
Source: Science Daily, Date: , 2009
According to a team of Swedish
and German scientists, the challenge of meeting future water needs, under the
impact of climate change and rapidly growing human demands for water, may be
less bleak than widely portrayed. If the overall water resources in river
basins are acknowledged and managed better, even the future food crises could
be significantly reduced, say researchers from the Stockholm Resilience Centre
at Stockholm University, Stockholm Environment Institute, and Potsdam Institute
for Climate Impact Research. The current approach to water management considers
only blue water, which is river discharge and groundwater. According to the
researchers, this limits the options to deal with increasing water scarcity and
water risks induced by climate change. Under these conditions, over three
billion of the current world population is estimated to suffer from severe
water scarcity. But, the new analysis also takes into account green water—the
water in soil that comes directly from rainfall. It suggests that the actual
number of people that may suffer from water scarcity is under one billion. The
study shows that wise water management can lift billions out of water poverty.
‘This opens a new area of investments for climate adaptation and a window to
achieve a much-needed new green revolution in the poor countries of the world.
Our analysis shows that many water-short countries would be able to produce
enough food for their population if green water is considered and managed
well,’ say the researchers.