Fresh water, the greater potential of Argentina and Paraguay

Fresh water shared by Argentina and Paraguay, source of life and energy, as well as biological and cultural diversity, are the greatest potential for both countries, facing the challenge to change the matrix based on agricultural production for export, said the Paraguayan Environment Ministry, Oscar Rivas.

cuenca-del-plata“Argentina and Paraguay are two countries that share one of the greatest treasures of mankind, the Plata basin, which is among the five hydrological systems in the world and second in the continent,” said Rivas to Télam.

In an interview at the Embassy of Paraguay in Buenos Aires, Rivas said that, “the Plata basin is one of the world’s richest territories, with Paraguay entirely within it and a good part of the most important areas of production, history , populations and Argentine economies. ”

“Whatever we do, with a positive or negative impact, is something that we have in common with Argentina, and from the fresh water that we share is derived from another element that makes the existence such as the hydropower, clean but not free from environmental impacts,” said. Read more

LATIN AMERICA: The waters are murky

waters-are-murkyMore than 20 percent of Latin Americans and Caribbeans have no basic sanitation and 15 percent of them directly without access to clean water, a resource victim of poor management, say experts meeting in Brazil.

“We must recognize that water quality is a serious problem with serious pollution situation due to mishandling and disabilities in management, and aquifers deplete its reserves at a rapid pace”, as stated by Walter Ubal, International Research Center Development, Government of Canada (IDRC ).

The super concentrates urban grow the demand for the resource and, consequently, the cost of search and purify is “high,” said the specialist in management of natural and environmental resources present at the XIV World Water Congress, held in Porto de Galinhas in northern Brazil. Read more

Energy, Water, Land Intertwined & Threatened, Says Report

Water resources, energy and land use are so mutually dependent that climate-related disruptions to any one of them could lead to economically devastating ripple effects — especially as a growing population puts increasing strains on all three. That’s one conclusion of a recent report issued by a federal advisory committee charged with assessing how climate change has already affected the U.S., and what the future holds.

The National Climate Assessment draft report, nearly 1,200 pages long, explores how the Earth’s climate is controlled by a complex system of interconnections. And, more specifically, how when the climate changes, those interconnections can make for all sorts of troubles.

Rising temperatures put stress on crops, forcing farmers to irrigate more heavily. At the same time, rising temperatures are leading to reduced water supplies. Credit: USDA via WikiCommons

Rising temperatures put stress on crops, forcing farmers to irrigate more heavily. At the same time, rising temperatures are leading to reduced water supplies.
Credit: USDA via WikiCommons

“Energy projects, [including] coal-fired power, biofuel, solar farms — require varying amounts of water and land; water projects — water supply, irrigation — require energy and land; and land activities — agriculture, forestry — depend upon energy and water,” write the authors. Read more

Planet Earth is home to 8.7 million species, scientists estimate

Latest bid to count and catalogue the living world is billed as the most accurate yet, but only a tiny proportion is known to science.

Humans share the planet with as many as 8.7 million different forms of life, according to what is being billed as the most accurate estimate yet of life on Earth.Earth-Hands

Researchers who have analysed the hierarchical categorisation of life on Earth to estimate how many undiscovered species exist say the diversity of life is not equally divided between land and ocean. Three-quarters of the 8.7m species – the majority of which are insects – are on land; only one-quarter, 2.2m, are in the deep, even though 70% of the Earth’s surface is water. Read more

Why an oil spill in Arctic waters would be devastating

beaufortAs sea ice disappears and open water seasons last longer, the High North – that vast area above the Arctic circle – has become the oil industry’s new frontier, offering potentially billions of barrels of oil from deep offshore wells in return for the huge technical, safety and financial risks.

But conservationists increasingly argue it is only a matter of time before a catastrophic spill devastates some of the least polluted waters in the world.

So far, the industry has mostly worked onshore or in shallow, easily accessible waters off Alaska. The worst spill was the Exxon Valdez tanker, which sank in 1989, with the effects still felt today. Read more