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Apr 6, 2012

National Geographic - Growing Food Demand Strains Energy, Water Supplies

On 6 April 2012 National Geographic published an article on the nexus between water, energy, and food in the developing world. This is an article in a series on global demands on water. This particular article begins by describing how groundwater levels are falling in Gujarat, India. Research by the International Water Management Institute (IWMI) points out that nine states in India, including Gujarat, have reached a "critical" groundwater condition - where pumping exceeds the long-term recharge of the aquifers.

India is one of a number of hotspots around the world where groundwater is being quickly depleted. There are other sites in the Middle East and in China. Since 1950, China has increased its use of groundwater tenfold. This has been used for irrigation and now the groundwater sources are beginning to run dry.

Energy costs are soaring and the water is depleting. So, agriculture is at risk due to "an unsustainable relationship with energy and groundwater." This is leading to dry aquifers, failing farms, increased soil salinity and carbon dioxide emissions, which is augmented by climate change.

For more see:

Smith, Jeff. "Growing Food Demand Strains Energy, Water Supplies," National Geographic News, 6 April 2012.

About Margaret

CEO and Curator (The Food Museum) | Managing Director and Chief Editor (GR2 Global LLC) | Educator (UCLA PhD) | Researching and writing on global food issues, nutrition and health, sustainability, history (preservation), conservation (natural resources), and design.
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