Apr 14, 2016

We’re running out of water, and the world’s powers are very worried

Syria
by
Nathan Halverson
,
Reveal
A boy carries buckets filled with water from a public tap amid an acute shortage of water, on the outskirts of Sanaa, Yemen. Water scarcity has been blamed for contributing to instability in the country. Photo: Hani Mohammed, Associated Press
A boy carries buckets filled with water from a public tap amid an acute shortage of water, on the outskirts of Sanaa, Yemen. Water scarcity has been blamed for contributing to instability in the country. Photo: Hani Mohammed, Associated Press

Secret conversations between American diplomats show how a growing water crisis in the Middle East destabilized the region, helping spark civil wars in Syria and Yemen, and how those water shortages are spreading to the United States...

Water scarcity increasingly is driven by three major factors: Global warming is forecast to create more severe droughts around the world. Meat consumption, which requires significantly more water than a vegetarian or low-meat diet, is spiking as a growing middle class in countries such as China and India can afford to eat more pork, chicken and beef. And the world’s population continues to grow, with an expected 2 billion more stomachs to feed by 2050