Water shortages leave affected nations at ‘extreme’ security risk

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From Green Right Now Reports

According to a new global water security index by UK-based consulting group Maplecroft, 10 nations (including five in Africa) are at “extreme risk” because of limited access to clean, fresh water. The study also suggested that the effects of climate change and population growth will place additional stress on water supplies, creating potential instability in affected regions.

The list of nations most at risk includes Somalia, Mauritania, Sudan, Niger, and Iraq. Other nations on the list, including Pakistan, Egypt, and Uzbekistan, already face internal and external tensions because of limited water supplies. Turkmenistan and Syria rounded out the top 10.

“There is a risk of water stress exacerbating future risks of conflict, although there is evidence that water scarcity may also help foster cooperation instead,” said Anna Moss, a Maplecroft environmental analyst.

The index evaluates the water security of 165 nations in four key areas: access to clean water and sanitation; availability of renewable water and reliance on external sources; compatibility of supply and demand; and the dependence of the nation’s economy on water supplies.

The most vulnerable regions include Africa, the Middle East and the Central Asian states of the former Soviet Union. Iceland and Norway are among the most secure nations.

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