Water Wars

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by HectortheInspector, Oct 21, 2009.

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  1. Mea Culpa. My comment on Baikal was utter bollocks. I don't know what I was thinking of when I wrote it.
    The problem, as @terminal noted, was that the main inflow to Baikal is in the south, through the Selenga Delta, and the Irkutsk hydro power plant is on the Angara that drains from Lake Baikal to the south west.

    Any pipeline from China will cut through Mongolia and the Selenga River catchment that feeds about 50% of the inflow into Baikal, and which the Mongolians are looking to put a hydro electric plant on.
    This will potentially reduce the inflow, (and Baikal had a record low in 2015), and a Selenga tributary, the Orkhon, is also being tapped by the Mongolians to supply mining works in the Gobi desert.

    Any proposed Chinese extraction will take out some more.

    The Selenga is already under stress, but the driving of a major pipeline through the catchment will probably do it no good at all, and that damage would feed through into Baikal.
    Should the water levels in Baikal fall below a certain critical threshold, then the Russian Irkutsk Hydro plant will become unworkable, unless over extraction is authorised, which would damage the local economy and ecology.
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  2. Think about the animals and prime Safari lands lost.
  3. But think of the improved coarse fishing...
  4. The records for Tiger fish , squeekers and Vundu are all from Kariba Lake.
  5. According to this source Selenga River Basin Threatened with Dams — Rivers without Boundaries , half the flow of the Selenga River arises in Mongolia. So given that the Selenga accounts for half the inflow to Lake Baikal, that suggests that about a quarter of the inflow to Lake Baikal arises in Mongolia.

    The biggest concern at this time though is that much of the sediment that forms the Selenga Delta in Lake Baikal originates in the part of the river that is in Mongolia. The Selenga Delta is an important part of the ecosystem of Lake Baikal, and as I said previously, the Russians consider the lake to be an ecological treasure (as does the world in general). As as a result, many people in Russia and elsewhere are very concerned about dams which may stop the flow of silt to the delta.

    There are several dams proposed, some to provide hydro electric power, and one to provide water to mining projects. Mining is a very important part of the economy of Mongolia, and mines require water for tailings ponds and processing of the ore or washing coal. As such, water projects to support the mines will be a high priority for them from an economic perspective.

    In my opinion, the chances of Mongolia agreeing to divert water to China (the discussion of which opened the current conversation) are pretty slim. Most of Mongolia is very dry, and the Selenga and its tributaries constitute most of the rivers of any consequence in Mongolia.
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  6. In case you misses it ......Nestle former Chairman Brabeck-Letmathe publicly Quotes
    "Access to water should not be a Public Right"