Joerg Barandat – Subject: W A T E R I N T A K E

World Water Week in Stockholm, September 1-6, 2013
Sep 01, 2013 The article “Transboundary water management – why it is important and why it needs to be developed” by SIWI’s Dr. Anders Jägerskog has been published as part of the UNESCO book that recently was launched …

… in a new resolution adopted on 24 July, the UN General Assembly designates 19 November as World Toilet Day …


Water restrictions increase for Victoria residents
August 30, 2013 Victoria officials are tightening up water use as the drought continues in South Texas. Residents and businesses will be under Stage III restrictions of the drought plan … Stage III limits not only the hours people can water but also the days and restricts complimentary glasses of water at restaurants and other activities … Despite the recent rainfall, Victoria and surrounding communities remain below the annual rainfall average. The city will remain in Stage III of its Drought Contingency Plan until the flow of the Guadalupe River returns and remains above 200 cubic feet per second for 14 consecutive days. The Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority reported … that the flow in Victoria was at 187 cubic feet per second … Residents are encouraged to practice water conservation at every opportunity … restrictions under Stage III include: Irrigation of landscaped areas (including golf course greens) with hose-end sprinklers or automatic irrigation systems shall be limited to designated water days … Irrigation of landscaped areas is also limited to 6 to 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. to midnight on designated watering days … Use of water to wash any motor vehicle, motorbike, boat, trailer, airplane or other vehicle is prohibited except between 6 a.m. and 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. to 10 p.m … If the health, safety and welfare of the public depends upon frequent vehicle cleansing, such as garbage trucks and vehicles used to transport food and perishables, the washing is exempt. Use of water to fill, refill or add to any indoor or outdoor swimming pools … is prohibited except from 6 to 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. and midnight. Use of water from hydrants is limited to fire fighting related activities or other activities necessary to maintain public health, safety and welfare … Restaurants may not serve water to patrons except when requested …

Water bodies meet in Sep to discuss how to reduce NRW
Aug 30, 2013 Officials from various bodies dealing in water conservation will meet … to discuss outcome of a pilot project implemented in Goa … Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has been working with Goa Public Works Department on a project to reduce non revenue water in the state, which can ease the water problem to a large extent. Non revenue water (NRW) is water that has been produced and is lost before it reaches the customer … The workshop aims to share issues, techniques and knowledge in NRW reduction with a view to facilitate and explore possibilities for NRW reduction in India … The event is also likely to deliberate upon issues related to institutional structures reforms (such as water tariff, accounting systems) …
Goa, India Water Supply and Sewerage Project

Recycled water being added to water table in southeastern county
August 28, 2013 … Two water agencies signed an agreement … that will add 24 trillion gallons of recycled water a year to the ground water used by residents of 43 cities in southern Los Angeles County. Four million residents from cities within the Water Replenishment District, from Montebello to Long Beach and Torrance to Cerritos, will have a local, reliable water source to boost well-head supplies. Soon, the WRD will no longer have to buy any water from the Colorado River or the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta in Northern California, a first for this district which manages two of the largest underground basins in Southern California, the Central and West Coast basins. The addition of what amounts to 83,000 acre-feet of recycled water, as much water used by 160,000 families in Southern California, makes WRD the largest user of regulated recycled water in the nation … “We will be able to replace water imported from Northern California and the Colorado River. This represents an historic milestone” … With the two halfs of the state fighting over a plan to move water more efficiently from the Delta by building twin concrete canals and restoring habitat for salmon and the Delta smelt, weaning a large portion of Southern California off imported water sends a message of water independence. Like America developing its own oil sources to replace foreign oil, California water agencies are tapping local water sources such as wastewater or salt water from the ocean that can make them water independent. By weaning themselves off imported water, agencies can plan for future water emergencies at lowered costs … State health department rules require the water to remain in the ground for six months … it can take a year or more to be pumped from the ground as potable water … recycled water is often blended with well water. “The process is highly regulated to assure compliance with the state regulations …” efforts to recycle water and pump it into the large San Gabriel Basin stretching north of Whittier Narrows to the foothills was stymied in the late 1980s by a small band of protesters who called it a “toilet-to-tap” program.

Water, sewer rates to increase in October
Aug. 28, 2013 … Shreveport City Council approved increasing city water and sewer rates initially by 13 percent and 55 percent …Sewer rate increases would continue each year after through 2022, while water rate increases would occur every few years for the same period … the city council has talked about increasing sewer rates to cover hundreds of millions of dollars in mandatory improvements to the city’s sewer collection system … The sewer improvements are required as part of a consent decree or agreement the city began negotiating with the U.S. Department of Justice and the Environmental Protection Agency in 2009 … The needed improvements stem from sewage overflows largely caused by breaks in the city’s aging sewer system. The overflows violate the Clean Water Act …

Northern Sea Route: Humming with Activity
August 27, 2013 China and Japan are positioning themselves to take advantage of the opening of the Northern Sea Route (NSR). Presently, the Chinese shipping company COSCO’s container ship is transiting through the NSR carrying exports from a Chinese port to Europe. Earlier this year, a 66,000 tonne vessel carried iron ore to China. Given this trend, in the coming years China may emerge as a major user of Northern sea route. Japan is also alive to the benefits from the NSR. Last year the Russian gas company GAZPROM delivered a consignment of liquefied natural gas to Japan using the NSR during November 9-18 … The rapid melting of the Arctic Sea ice due to global warming has led to the opening of the NSR. The passage is open for ships during the summer season up to four months. This year transit may be possible even for up to six months. Some ships may be able to sail without the escorting icebreakers. From Rotterdam in Netherlands to Dalian in China, the time of passage will be about 35 days through the NSR as compared to 48 days through the Suez Canal … The Arctic holds about 20 percent of global hydrocarbon resources. Several companies have plans to invest in the oil resources … According to the information on the website of NSRA (www.NSRA.ru 25 August 2013), 454 vessels have been given permission by the Russian authorities to transit through the route … Russian flags (83 percent) and the rest (17 percent ) belonging to various countries including France, UK, China, Poland, Germany, Liberia, Marshall Islands, Liberia, etc. … Russia has major plans to rejuvenate its north through the development of NSR. Arkhangelsk, a major Russian port on the White Sea adjacent to the NSR, will be connected to Perm in the mineral rich Urals through Belkomur railway line. Many cities of the north will be connected through the NSR … Whether the potential of NSR is over-hyped is a matter of debate … What is even more important is that the geopolitical importance of the NSR will be immense. As early trends show, minerals can now be transported from Europe to Asia Pacific and goods from China are now being exported to Europe. Super tankers have already made successful passage through the route. Russia is already using the route to bring development and prosperity to the North by linking the NSR with the rest of Russia through railway lines. The Russian rail and road network will link the northern sea route to Central Asia. Russia will emerge as a major beneficiary of the opening of the NSR … The route is still hazardous and expensive … The investment in the mineral exploration and shipping is fraught with high risk. Russia will have to invest a lot in infrastructure to provide connectivity with the hinterland. Shortening of the distance and time from Europe to Asia through the Northern Sea Route will lead to the saving of fuel and on the emissions of carbon dioxide … http://idsa.in/idsacomments/NorthernSeaRoute_agupta_270513

Shrinking water supply under threat in U.S. farm breadbasket
August 27, 2013 – A critical water source for U.S. farmers and ranchers is being depleted at a rapid rate and nearly 70 percent of it will disappear within the next 50 years if the current trend does not change … Thirty percent of the groundwater from a critical portion of what is known as the High Plains Aquifer already has been pumped and another 39 percent will be depleted over the next five decades, according to the report by environmental science and engineering experts published … in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences … limited water supplies will begin to have a significant impact on food production over the next few decades. It laid out different scenarios for how targeted reductions in water usage made now could extend peak agricultural production for many more decades. It said cutting back water use from the aquifer by 20 percent now, for instance, would reduce agricultural production in the near term but would extend the longevity of production well into 2070. „It is generally understood the groundwater is going down. At some point in the future we need to use less water,“ said David Steward, a professor of civil engineering at Kansas State University who participated in the study … The study examined … the High Plains Aquifer in the western part of Kansas … tapped to irrigate corn, soybeans, wheat and other crops, sustain cattle and other livestock, and for drinking water for millions of people throughout the region. The researchers said current water policies have not translated to significant reductions in use of the groundwater – people are simply pumping until wells run dry … „Although consumption of freshwater supplies has not yet crossed a potentially dangerous planetary threshold, crop yields have begun to fall in many regions because of water scarcity, and global food security remains a worldwide concern,“ the report said. „There is a clear need for society to become prepared for the consequences of reductions in groundwater use that shall occur in the foreseeable future“ …
Tapping unsustainable groundwater stores for agricultural production in the High Plains Aquifer of Kansas, projections to 2110, PNAS August 26, 2013
siehe auch:
Groundwater depletion and sustainability of irrigation in the US High Plains and Central Valley, PNAS May 29, 2012

Fire and Water: China’s Looming Coal Problem
Aug 26, 2013 — To maintain its economic growth and provide for its massive population, China must reconcile two powerful, converging trends: energy demand and resource scarcity. One prime example of this tension is the country’s coal use and water supply. According to a new WRI analysis, more than half of China’s proposed coal-fired power plants are slated to be built in areas of high or extremely high water stress. If these plants are built, they could further strain already-scarce resources, threatening water security for China’s farms, other industries, and communities … China’s government planned 363 coal-fired power plants for construction across China, with a combined generating capacity exceeding 557 gigawatts (for reference, installed capacity at the end of 2012 was 758 GW. This amounts to an almost 75 percent increase in coal-fired generating capacity. China already ranks as world’s largest coal consumer, accounting for almost 50 percent of global coal use … coal-related industries—mining production, coal-to-chemical, and power generation—are extremely water-intensive. Coal mines depend on water to extract, wash, and process the coal, while coal-burning power plants need water to create steam and cool generating systems. If all of the proposed plants are built, the coal industry – including mining, chemical production, and power generation – could withdraw as much as 10 billion cubic meters of water annually by 2015. That’s more than one-quarter of the water available for withdrawal every year from the Yellow River … In those six provinces, competition for water between domestic, agricultural, and industrial users is already high: 60 percent of the proposed generating capacity is in areas of high or extremely high water stress … The Chinese government has also outlined three national goals for water, called the “Three Red Lines.” These “lines” aim to cap annual maximum water use at 700 billion cubic meters (about 25 percent of annual available supply), increase irrigation use efficiency to 60 percent by 2030, and protect water quality to maximize sustainable development. Those quantity, efficiency, and quality targets are an important first step toward addressing the water-energy trade-off at the heart of China’s coal development, but it’s important that the country go further. To meet its water cap targets, China needs to it slow down coal development and introduce a combination of significant water saving and efficiency programs into the coal industry …

Water scarcity is the biggest challenge for Delhi
Aug 26, 2013 … Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit today identified water scarcity as the biggest challenge facing the national capital and cautioned that the situation may worsen in the next five years if concrete steps to address the issue are not taken … noted that population of Delhi was increasing significantly and the per capita consumption of water was probably one of the highest in the world so the city may have to face „great trouble“ in the next few years if supply of raw water does not go up … Asserting that government was trying its best to rationalise distribution of water, the Chief Minister said there was a need to cut consumption of water and urged industry leaders to help government in overcoming the challenge … Large parts of the city witnessed a severe water shortage last summer and people even resorted to violent protests in many localities … The government for the some time has been considering hiking water tariff significantly to cut wastage of the natural resource …

Water Battle Brewing: Inyo County Doesn’t Like L.A. Plan
August 25, 2013 Plans by the City of Los Angeles to sink new wells to extract more water from the Eastern Sierra are being opposed by officials in Inyo County … The city plans to augment its water supply by removing 1,100 acre feet of groundwater a year from the desert valley south of the now-dry Owens Lake, about 120 miles north of the Civic Center. The Department of Water and Power has issued an initial environmental assessment that contends there would be no negative impact, a preliminary step to avoiding a full environmental impact report on the plan … the Inyo Water Director, Bob Harrington, contends that the diversion project would violate California environmental laws. Harrington said the pumping „would have a substantial impact“ on the desert environment near Olancha and Little Lake … Los Angeles has recently offered to settle its lawsuit against the Town of Mammoth Lakes over its water, which comes from a creek that is claimed by L.A. as its water. The city has also just reached an agreement to begin restoring Mono Lake, where earlier agreements to end water diversions have failed to sufficiently divert creek water from the L.A. system to the desert lake.

Water quality in Chennai more worrying than scarcity
August 25, 2013 … A nation-wide survey “Kya Aapka Paani Beemar hai” reveals that all is not well with Chennai water, and scarcity of water is just one of the many issues that the residents have. The study, by Eureka Forbes and GFK, aimed at assessing how increasing levels of water contamination and unavailability of safe drinking water affected families and individuals in the country … As far as the State goes, most urban centres and towns use more of surface water, while in rural areas the dependence is greater on borewells, and other sources of groundwater. Since surface water is stored over a long period of time, the natural process of purification takes over initially … The most worrying aspect of all, Dr. Elango says, is the great paradigm in the way water is being supplied over the last decade. “Till 1980, there was hardly any packaged drinking water. But today, clearly, the private sector is slowly drawing away potable water from cities’ reserves. The government should bring in checks to prevent commercial exploitation of a natural resource” …http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/water-quality-in-city-more-worrying-than-scarcity/article5056261.ece

15 europäische Städte bereiten sich auf den Klimawandel vor
23.08.2013 Das EU-Projekt „Adaptation Strategies in European Cities“ konnte nach 18 Monaten erfolgreich abgeschlossen werden … Städte sind vom Klimawandel Städte besonders betroffen: Hitzewellen in dicht bebauten Gebieten belasten die menschliche Gesundheit, Starkregenfälle überfordern die urbane Infrastruktur, Sturmfluten bedrohen den Gebäudebestand. Darauf müssen sich Stadtverwaltungen rechtzeitig vorbereiten. Gemeinsam mit Projektpartnern aus ganz Europa bildete adelphi Mitarbeitende kommunaler Verwaltungen zu verschiedenen Themen und Aspekte urbaner Anpassungsmaßnahmen weiter – vom Atlantik bis zum Schwarzen Meer. Inhalte waren Methoden zur Bestimmung der Vulnerabilität gegenüber dem Klimawandel, Ansätze zur Verankerung des Themas in der Verwaltung sowie die Begleitung von Strategie- und Veränderungsprozessen …
Europäische Kommission: EU Cities Adapt

Lift your head from the sand
August 20, 2013 The outrage over the suspension of an official, Durga Shakti Nagpal, for simply doing her job—check illegal sand mining in the rivers of Uttar Pradesh—has highlighted a crucial issue. It is now evident that illegal mining of sand from rivers and beaches is rampant and the underbelly of this industry … is powerful and connected. Worse still, all this is happening in violation of the orders of the apex court of the country … But regulation is a must. Sand removal has always been done to de-silt rivers and channelise the flow. But never in this rapacious manner—the river is literally wiped clean from the bottom. As a result, the crucial recharge zone—think of it as a sponge that holds water and slowly seeps it out into the surrounding for use—is destroyed. The river is hollowed out, its ecology disturbed and fish habitats damaged. Removal of sand, therefore, needs to be assessed for environmental damage, restricted and carefully regulated. But sand has slipped through the cracks in the regulatory system for many years … We do not realise that the concrete house we build is two parts of sand, four parts of stone and gravel and only one part of cement. Not surprisingly, there are no estimates of the amount of this natural material required. Everyone plans for cement but forgets it is only a binder. The river pays the cost … What needs to be done? First, illegal mining must be stopped … Second, rules for legal and regulated mining of such minerals should be treated as critical. Plan the mining areas as clusters. Give clearance to certain minimum plot sizes and, most importantly, do cumulative and regional-level environmental impact assessments to estimate the hydro-geology of the stretch and the amount of sand that can be extracted from it sustainably … Thirdly, we need alternatives for sand and other natural aggregates in construction. If concrete is the second most consumed material after water—as is said—and Indians still use much less than global average, then we will only need more. If our rivers are already crying for help, think of what will happen when more houses, flyovers, roads and malls are built. Now when I see a building, I think of a river. We need new solutions …

Navajo Water Rights Settlement approved in Aztec District Court
08/20/2013 – The fight over water in San Juan County is far from over despite an historic water rights settlement approved late last week that could impact San Juan County’s residents for decades to come … guarantees the Navajo Nation an additional 130,000 acre-feet of water on top of the 195,000 acre-feet previously allotted to the tribal government. The settlement also secures federal support for the Navajo-Gallup Water Supply Project that will provide water to the eastern portion of the Navajo Nation, the southwestern portion of the Jicarilla Apache Nation and the city of Gallup … critics say it will dry out the region and open doors for the tribal government to sell water to large cities downstream, such as Las Vegas, Phoenix and Los Angeles. „… this is a death sentence of San Juan County and the rest of New Mexico … If the Navajo finally get all this water, they can export it to other states …“ The water rights settlement is also worrying local farmers and ranchers …

Where Did the Water Go? Busting 5 Myths About Water Levels on the Great Lakes
August 20, 2013 … The extreme low levels earlier this year left many asking, “Where did the water go?” The answer is that it simply evaporated. The surface of the Great Lakes acts like an enormous evaporating pan under the right conditions … the lack of ice cover in 2011-12 and record-breaking warm temperatures created ideal conditions for high rates of evaporation on Lakes Superior, Huron, and Michigan. These lakes had already been fluctuating below average levels for 15 years. A severe drought prevented the lakes from replenishing themselves, and water levels reached record lows. Another reason the water levels on Lakes Michigan and Huron are lower than normal is the past dredging and erosion in the St. Clair River that resulted in a 10- to 15-inch (25- to 38-centimeter) lowering of water levels. These historic losses were never offset with mitigation measures. The only dredging that occurs today is to keep rivers at authorized depths for navigation. Recent studies show this is not the cause of low water … Myth 1: Water levels are declining because companies are pumping millions of gallons of water from springs every day in northern Michigan, and it’s being bottled up and taken away … The difference between evaporation from the largest of the five lakes and pumping rates in Northern Michigan is roughly a factor of 1,000 or more … Myth 2: Water from the Great Lakes is secretly being shipped to China … this is better categorized as a conspiracy theory. Its origins go back to concerns raised when opening the Great Lakes to international shipping in the 1950s. The myth is perpetuated today in the blogosphere and sometimes includes the detail that bladder tanks are being used to transport the water in the holds of ships bound for China … Myth 3: Water is being diverted to the Mississippi River (or through a pipeline to western states) … Water diversions in the Great Lakes basin are regulated by appropriate state, provincial and federal government authorities. The International Joint Commission (IJC) approves and provides regulatory orders for projects that affect levels and flows on the other side of the international border … More water evaporates from the Great Lakes than flows over the Niagara Falls every year … If there were a secret pipeline pumping water from the Great Lakes, it would have to be massive … Myth 4: Just blame it on the weather (or Mother Nature) … It’s true that the weather plays a major role in water level fluctuations. The lakes respond rapidly to changes in weather, with the contrast between this year and last serving as an excellent example … just blaming the weather is not the full story … Myth 5: There’s nothing that can be done … Current water control structures at the outlets of Lakes Superior and Ontario do very little in controlling the overall supply of water in the basin. Engineering or other solutions come with a big price tag and have yet to gain acceptance as feasible options …

Jordan to Sell Desalinated Water to Israel
Aug 20, 2013 Jordan will sell water from a planned Red Sea desalination project to Israel in return for about 50 million cubic meters of drinking water a year from the Tiberias reservoir … at a rate of 1 dinar ($1.41) a cubic meter and buy from the country at a rate of 0.3 dinar a cubic meter … The arrangement will help save Jordan the cost of conveying water from the south to the northern governorates … Jordan, one of the world’s driest countries, will seek bids this year for a $980 million project to transfer water from the Red Sea to a desalination plant with capacity of 200 million cubic meters a year … A pipeline will be built from the plant in Wadi Araba to the Dead Sea to discharge the brine. Jordan plans to get $300 million to $400 million in grants for the venture …

Climate Change: The Water and Food Security Nexus in Africa
13.08.13 Future demand for water by farming, including livestock production, will be influenced by strategies for food security, and increasing food supply in Africa is closely linked to the utilization of and access to water. Water shortages are increasingly becoming a serious impediment to intensifying agriculture, with about one-third of the people in the region living in drought-prone areas at present – as the FAO already stressed in 2008. In these areas, drought-proofing measures such as soil and water conservation, improved water-harvesting techniques, minimum tillage, improved crop selection and varieties, and small-scale irrigation will be important elements in the region’s food security strategies. Unpredictable rainfall as a result of climate change, lack of water management and failure of crops is making food security impossible in this region … A number of countries in Africa, including Ethiopia, are characterized as food deficit and are dependent on food aid. This became a major concern for the international community … This is mainly because Ethiopia’s agriculture is rainfed and very sensitive to climate variability. Insufficient rainfall, for instance, could lead the country into famine. However, it is not just the scarcity of water and fertile land that makes Ethiopia one of the largest recipients of food aid in Africa but also its lack of water management, transfer of technology and financial constraints to developing its agriculture sector. In fact, Ethiopia has “significant agricultural potential” because of its water resources and its fertile land areas. Recognizing this huge potential, the government implemented a strategy to tackle the current food deficit and implemented the “agricultural development led industrialization policy” … While irrigation seems the obvious measure for improving food security by increasing agricultural productivity, it also has the additional benefits of being able to provide a basis for growth, income and employment …
[… das ist nicht “stressfrei“
hinsichtlich des Nil-Unteranliegers Ägypten! J.B.

More Energy for European Climate Diplomacy
13 August 2013 … EU Foreign Affairs Council adopted a set of conclusions on EU climate diplomacy. Following the ideas published in the Joint Reflection paper by the External Action Service in 2011, there are three storylines of climate diplomacy that are to shape the overall narrative of EU climate policy. More energy will be needed during the next months in Brussels and European capitals – not least to help explain the interests and priorities of the EU regarding an ambitious climate approach for 2015 and beyond …
Bezugsdokumente Consilium / Foreign Affairs Council (FAC)
24 June 2013 Council conclusions on EU Climate Diplomacy
Brussels, 26.3.2013 COM(2013) 167 final
The 2015 International Climate Change Agreement: Shaping international climate
policy beyond 2020 …
englisch: http://ec.europa.eu/clima/policies/international/negotiations/future/docs/com_2013_167_en.pdf
European External Action Service – Environment and Climate Change http://www.eeas.europa.eu/environment/index_en.htm

The water versus energy paradox
August 11, 2013 Oil and gas industry will switch en mass to tapping brackish aquifers for hydraulic fracturing within five years … Water and energy are hopelessly entangled — you can’t have one without the other … On top of that comes a new oil and gas boom in Texas that’s using water in previously unheard of amounts … Drilling horizontal wells and the use of hydraulic fracturing to crack open shale formations have opened up new oil and gas fields across the state. Hydraulic fracturing uses 2 million to 9 million gallons of water along with sand and chemicals pumped at high pressure to break open dense rock, releasing trapped oil and gas … “There are real water quality risks from (hydraulic fracturing) … It’s just not exactly where people think they might be.” The water that returns to the surface after hydraulic fracturing is often stored in drilling pits and contains everything from drilling mud to radioactive materials. If pits aren’t lined properly, that fracking water can contaminate ground water … Water that comes back up a well after hydraulic fracturing has to be disposed of somewhere, and it’s usually trucked to a disposal well … Conventional oil and gas production uses 1 to 5 gallons of water to create 1 gallon of fuel. Shale oil and gas production is more water intensive, using 5 to 10 gallons of water to create 1 gallon of fuel. But growing corn for ethanol uses 500 to 2,000 gallons of water per gallon of fuel created …

Kuwait building $56m desalination project
11.08.2013 … The project will reuse low-salinity water … providing newly constructed residential areas with desalinated water … It involves drilling five wells, installing pumping stations, and laying a pipeline network to transport desalinated water to nearby reservoirs. … The new desalination project is part of the government’s efforts to keep pace with growing demand for drinking water in the country. Total drinking water production in Kuwait is 453 million gallons per day. The country’s population hit 3 million in 2010 and is expected to be 5.5 million in 2025. Per capita water consumption is 110 gallons per day, almost double the international rate. In addition, a recent official study showed that around 25 percent of the country’s drinking water production is being wasted …

China needs to change its energy strategy in the Mekong region
16 July 2013 … China’s economic cooperation strategies towards its four Mekong neighbours has dovetailed nicely into a strategy that fits China’s current development needs … To survive, the Chinese ‘factory’ needs inputs like energy and raw materials.” But is an approach based on geo-economic cooperation a sustainable long term strategy for both China and its Mekong neighbours? The PetroChina pipeline cutting through Burma serves as a test of the region’s commitment to China’s geo-economic strategies. Not only does the Myanmar government have the power to choke a strategic energy flow to China, but a Japanese firm holds majority ownership of the Burmese port on the Indian Ocean end of the pipeline. Nationalist sentiments inside China could accuse the Chinese government of being held hostage not just by Japan but by Myanmar, thus threatening the stability guaranteed by China’s geo-economic approach … In many ways China has exported its state-led, growth-at-any-cost development model to the Mekong region. Less developed countries stand to benefit economically from Chinese-backed infrastructure development projects like the US $7.2 billion high-speed railway from northern Laos to Vientiane and hydropower projects on the main stem of the Mekong in Laos and Cambodia. However an even distribution of those benefits is unlikely and can only be realised once Laos and Cambodia pay off their colossal debts to China. China’s construction of eight hydropower projects on the upper Mekong River in Yunnan province has shown Laos that it can ignore protests from downstream countries about the negative effects of its dams. This isn’t the only environmental risk for China’s Mekong neighbours. In China hydropower developers can easily skirt environmental laws and produce misleading environmental impact assessments … Laos’ plans to develop eleven dams on the mainstream of the Mekong and more than seventy on its tributaries for energy export to China and Thailand. Whilst this will boost its energy resource portfolio, it risks jeopardising its natural resources, especially fisheries … Moreover, China’s importing of hydropower from Southeast Asia is part of a push to reduce its carbon footprint by investing in renewable energy. However, to replace the loss of protein from Mekong fisheries, Laos and Cambodia will be forced to invest in industrial, carbon intense livestock raising; thus China’s carbon footprint will simply have been sent downstream … If China wishes to improve its deteriorating reputation in the region it will need to revise its geo-economic strategy. One element of this should be to promote the actions of a wider range of stakeholders. China should also demonstrate rule of law best practices to its Mekong neighbours, particularly when conducting social and environmental impact assessments of infrastructure development projects. Without these changes, China’s regional strategies and the sustainability of the Mekong region are at serious risk.


Preliminary Results of the ASP’s “Global Security and Defense Index on Climate Change”
13 August 2013 The American Security Project (ASP) envisages an interactive tool … that will allow users to explore how governments around the world view climate security based on the respective comprehensive study. For now, preliminary results of this research have been presented in a paper by Andrew Holland and Xander Vagg, indicating that about 70 % of states consider climate change a relevant security issue, while some view it purely as an environmental challenge (about 20 %) …
21 March 2013 Global Security Defense Index on Climate Change: PreliminaryResults
The American Security Project releases the preliminary results …

Water Thematic Consultation report just released
14 Aug 2013 … is a result of sifting through and distilling the hundreds of contributions made in response to dozens of practical questions raised during the 6-months „World We Want“ stakeholder consultation. Recommendations emerged for a new development framework that calls for reducing inequalities around water through rights-based approaches to service provision and governance. These approaches should integrate the management of water resources and wastewater, and improvements in water quality, requiring all sectors to break out of their narrow silos … http://www.unwater.org/downloads/Final9Aug2013_WATER_THEMATIC_CONSULTATION_REPORT.pdf
„World We Want“ http://www.unwater.org/worldwewant.html


Rivers, up close and personal
Aug 31, 2013 Over centuries people have learnt to live with rivers. Civilisations grew along rivers. They are inextricable parts of our lives and culture but over the past 150 years this association has weakened … There was a time when there was a river in everybody’s life … Over the past 150 years or so, this connection has been severed. The change happened sometime during colonial rule. Colonial water planners and water engineers introduced the idea of tapping rivers. Colonial intervention transformed seasonally inundated floodplains into sites for irrigation, involving construction of barrages and weirs. But colonial understanding of hydrology could not come to terms with the idiosyncrasies of Indian rivers … Unfortunately, our planners did not take note of this failure of the colonial state when they devised plans for Indian rivers. At the same time, the people also lost the spiritual connect with rivers … In this Independence Day special, we bring this collection of writings to celebrate the river—what it was in our lives and what it must be tomorrow. India’s independence is meaningless if we cannot save our rivers …
13.08.13 River Tales … E-Book …

… was sonst noch so war:

US, China Conduct Counter Piracy Exercise
8/25/2013 — The guided-missile destroyer USS Mason … participated in a counter piracy exercise in the Gulf of Aden with elements of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (Navy) … joined Chinese destroyer Harbin (DDG 112) and Chinese auxiliary replenishment oiler Weishanhu (AO 887) to conduct a series of evolutions including combined visit, board, search and seizure (VBSS), live-fire proficiency, and aviation operations to enhance bilateral interoperability in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility (AOR). „The U.S. Navy and People’s Liberation Army (Navy) share a common interest in preserving legitimate mariners‘ access to, and secure use of, the maritime domain by deterring, disrupting and suppressing piracy,“ said Vice Adm. John Miller, commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command (NAVCENT), U.S. 5th Fleet, Combined Maritime Forces. „Both regional and global security environments call for practical cooperation between navies, and this exercise demonstrates a cooperative effort by the U.S. and China to address common maritime security challenges.“ The Chinese oiler played the role of a pirated vessel as VBSS teams from both Mason and Harbin performed two boardings as a combined unit. The U.S.-Chinese team successfully completed the VBSS evolutions that included mock medical emergency and hostage scenarios … The first bilateral counter piracy exercise ever conducted between the U.S. and Chinese navies occurred near the Horn of Africa with USS Winston S. Churchill (DDG 81) and PLA(N) frigate Yi Yang (FF 548), September 2012 … http://www.navy.mil/submit/display.asp?story_id=76157

The Drive to Blame Russia
August 21, 2013 … To be sure, Russia often takes positions contrary to those of the United States, and the Kremlin is an easy target for criticism … The truth is that the country is now less of a threat than at any time since World War II, and its potential to shape global affairs pales in comparison with that of the United States. Russia is not the Soviet Union … Cold War reflexes still play a big role in the current tensions with Moscow … No robust commercial relationship or delicately balanced economic interdependence is at risk, as it would with China. There is no threat of military confrontation, given Russia’s diminished conventional capabilities. And even if Russia remains the only country that could annihilate the United States in 30 minutes, who fears intemperate words will cancel the logic of mutually assured destruction? A deeper, unacknowledged psychological reason also drives Americans to blame Russia. Simply put, it has denied them the final, morally satisfying victory in the Cold War by refusing to take the path to free-market democracy … Victory is complete only when your enemies decide to emulate you. That is what Germany and Japan did after World War II, and that is why Americans look back at that war as the “good” war and at those two countries as their closest of allies today. Putin’s Russia has refused to take that path … And so Americans lash out at Russia … if the United States really wanted to stand up and send a message to Putin, it would put its own house in order and demonstrate that it has the creativity and wisdom to craft, and the will and skill to execute, policies to advance its interests …

Special Report – Australia–Canada security cooperation in the Asia–Pacific. Paper 1. Sources of tension in the Asia–Pacific: strategic competition, divided regionalism and non-traditional security challenges
14 August 2013 … first in a series of three papers commissioned for a project that ASPI has been jointly running with Canada’s Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI). The project explores the rationale for and possible mechanisms of closer Australia–Canada defence and security cooperation in the Asia–Pacific … considers strategic and security challenges in the region. Canada and Australia—resource-based economies with a record of bilateral and institutional engagement in the region, and important US allies—have an interest in these challenges, and in ensuring regional strategic stability that promotes economic growth … There are a number of strategic challenges currently affecting the Asia-Pacific. In a period of global uncertainty, China has emerged as a confident and powerful actor, while the ability of the United States to remain the region’s hegemonic power has come into question. Maritime boundary claims, regionalism and unresolved Cold War sovereignty disputes are a source of considerable uncertainty. A number of non-traditional security challenges are also emerging, including energy and food insecurity, cyber security and the threat of a climate catastrophe-related humanitarian crisis. Canada and Australia — resource-based economies with a record of bilateral and institutional engagement in the region, and important US allies — have an interest in these challenges, and in ensuring regional strategic stability that promotes economic growth …

Sino-ASEAN Strategic Partnership: The Missing Trust
August 7, 2013 The China-ASEAN strategic partnership celebrated its 10th anniversary on August 2, 2013 in Bangkok. The host Thailand coordinated this landmark partnership meeting and one of the talking points at this event was “China’s rise” … Thailand’s Foreign Affairs Ministry stated “… China is rising and we believe that this is definitely a peaceful rise.” The Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi dismissed concerns over China’s rise and stated that “there is nothing to be surprised” and that China’s development is an “opportunity for ASEAN”. While the decade old strategic partnership between China and ASEAN is certainly an occasion for celebration from the purview of their bilateral engagement; it needs to be asked why both sides still have to reassure each other about ‘China’s rise’. Does this imply that the ASEAN is still skeptical over the intent of China’s rise? … The debate over China’s rise has resurfaced during the celebration of the 10th anniversary event of Sino-ASEAN strategic partnership. Maritime politics, primarily the dispute on South China Sea, between China and some ASEAN members has revived this debate. Given China’s recent maritime assertiveness in South China Sea, mistrust remains between China and ASEAN today, prompting many to review China’s rise … China has defended its rise in foreign policy dealings, and has officially pronounced it as “peaceful development”. The White Paper, China’s Peaceful Development … in 2011 viewed that the theory of “peaceful development” is a strategic choice for China … A strategic partnership must also have political and strategic bearings of a bilateral relationship. In the case of the Sino-ASEAN strategic partnership this seems to be problematic, specifically given the dispute over the South China Sea … China insists on an “Asia Way” and advocates an “ASEAN Way” for two correlated reasons. First, China does not want the ASEAN countries to seek outside powers’ intervention on maritime issues, mainly the US, which has generally been critical of China’s assertive behaviour on the South China Sea issue, and have asked for freedom of navigation. Therefore, Beijing has urged ASEAN to work out a consensus over the COC and has tried to push the DOC. Second, Beijing wants to keep outside powers away from Asian politics, so that it can easily remain the most dominant power in the region. This is also advocated keeping in mind the rapid growth and evolution of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), as some ASEAN countries have already joined this ongoing Asia-Pacific trade liberalization negotiations process … The China-ASEAN strategic partnership has helped ASEAN to stay connected institutionally with China. Beijing too realizes the significance of this strategic partnership, which extends beyond the purview of bilateralism today. However, no matter how much assurance and promise Beijing articulates about the scope and content of its own development and rise, the ASEAN community and the South-East Asian region would still continue to debate China’s development, at least till China displays a more moderate posture over the South China Sea dispute …

AFRICOM at 5 Years: The Maturation of a New U.S. Combatant Command
August 08, 2013 The U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM) … was created in 2007 amid great controversy in both Africa and the United States over its location and mission. Over the last 5 years, AFRICOM has matured greatly, overcoming much of the initial resistance from African stakeholders through careful public messaging, and by addressing most of the U.S. interagency concerns about the Command’s size and proper role within the U.S. national security/foreign policy community. This Letort Paper describes the geostrategic, operational, and intellectual changes that explain why AFRICOM was created, and debunks three myths about AFRICOM: that it was created to “exploit” Africa’s oil and gas riches, “blocks” China’s rise in Africa, and that France “opposes” AFRICOM. The author concludes by raising five issues that are important to AFRICOM’s future: 1) allocated forces to carry out short-term training engagements in Africa; 2) preference to emerging democracies in the selection of the Command’s partner-nations; 3) the desirability of regional approaches in Africa, including helping the African Union and its Regional Economic Communities to establish standby brigades; 4) the location of the Command’s headquarters, which should remain in Stuttgart, Germany, for operational efficiency; and, 5) the need to carry out a top-down “right-sizing” exercise at AFRICOM during a time of severe budget constraints and a real risk for the United States of “strategic insolvency …

Do not blindly trust official guardians of our security
August 21, 2013 Last month technicians from GCHQ, the UK electronic surveillance agency, stood over journalists from The Guardian newspaper to make sure that they destroyed a computer … This week the British police abused anti-terror legislation to detain David Miranda, the partner of Glenn Greenwald, a Guardian journalist … The UK government is behaving like a regime that does not want its citizens and media to know or to question what is being done in their name … UK and US politicians and spooks insist that it is all within the law and that careless talk costs lives. Journalists don’t know enough to judge what should be kept secret … It would have been disastrous if the German navy had read in the Manchester Guardian that Bletchley Park, forerunner to GCHQ, had found a way to crack its Enigma encryption in the second world war … consider what we now know about the scope of NSA and GCHQ surveillance … The agencies have close links with US and UK telecoms and technology companies … They can, if they gain the legal authority, scan the activities of millions. In the era of cloud computing and big data, when much corporate and individual information is stored on the servers of US companies, or passes through telecoms hubs there, it gives the NSA potential access to a mass of information on anyone who is not shielded under US law. That is, most of us. Before the leaks, we had very little insight into the sheer scale of this … Seeing who guards the guardians, I prefer The Guardian.

The Security Concerns of the Baltic States as NATO Allies
August 27, 2013 If the United States is likely to fight in a coalition with small allies in the future, then it is useful to understand the experience, capabilities, and perspectives of those allies. Since regaining independence in 1991, the countries of Latvia, Estonia, and Lithuania have been very active in supporting NATO and U.S. military operations abroad. It is notable that the three Baltic countries have also used the deployment of a significant part of their forces in the last decade as a major part of their program to carry out a major force transformation … [sehr anschauliche Beschreibung
von Befindlichkeiten … und auch ein Kern Problem der Allies Divided wird schon
treffend erfasst „…
The admission of
former Warsaw Pact nations … into NATO has changed the dynamics of the Western
alliance in ways that most of the Western leaders, especially those from the
“Old Europe” nations, still do not fully grasp. The new NATO members tend to
look much more to the United States than to European NATO members for leadership
in all security matters. While the Baltic States tend to be enthusiastic
European Union (EU) members in matters of economics, in matters concerning
security, they tend to look first to the United States …” das macht
manchen Ego-Trip verständlich … da die Europäische Union aber nicht stattfindet
… kein zukunfts- und richtungsweisendes Werk

Bundeskriminalamt Polizei + Forschung
Propaganda 2.0 – Psychological Effects of Right-Wing and Islamic Extremist Internet Videos

20 Aug 2013 General (Retd) David H Petraeus named RUSI Senior Vice President …

… und dann haben wir da noch: [Anhänge]

Beste Grüße von der Elbe!

Jörg Barandat