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Posted Tue Jul 20 2010: from Yale environment 360:
Does Egypt Own The Nile? A Battle Over Precious Water
A simmering dispute over who owns the waters of the River Nile is heating up. From its headwaters in Ethiopia and the central African highlands to the downstream regional superpower Egypt, the Nile flows through 10 nations. But by a quirk of British colonial history, only Egypt and its neighbor Sudan have any rights to its water. That is something the upstream African nations say they can no longer accept. Yet as the nations of the Nile bicker over its future, nobody is speaking up for the river itself -- for the ecosystems that depend on it, or for the physical processes on which its future as a life-giving resource in the world's largest desert depends. The danger is that efforts to stave off water wars may lead to engineers trying to squeeze yet more water from the river -- and doing the Nile still more harm. What is at risk here is not only the Nile, but also the largest wetland in Africa and one of the largest tropical wetlands in the world -- the wildlife-rich Sudd.
[Read more stories about: ecosystem interrelationships, short-term thinking, water issues]

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'Doc Michael says:
That ownership thing humans do... just hasn't worked out so well.

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