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Friday, 30 September 2011

Unite Nations Secretary-General's Message on World Habitat Day - October 3, 2011

Celebrations in 2011 

Secretary-General's Message on World Habitat Day 2011

This year, World Habitat Day falls during the month when demographers predict our planet’s seven billionth inhabitant will be born.  The future that this child and its generation will inherit depends to a great degree on how we handle the competing pressures of growing population growth, urbanization and climate change.
Experts predict that by the year 2050, the global population will have increased by 50 per cent from what it was in 1999.  Also by that time, scientists say, global greenhouse gas emissions must decrease by 50 per cent compared to levels at the turn of the millennium.  I call this the “50-50-50 challenge”.

Rising sea levels are a major impact of climate change — and an urgent concern.  Sixty million people now live within one metre of sea level.  By the end of the century, that number will jump to 130 million.  Major coastal cities — such as Cairo, New York, Karachi, Kolkata, Belem, New Orleans, Shanghai, Tokyo, Lagos, Miami and Amsterdam — could face serious threats from storm surges.
The nexus between urbanization and climate change is real and potentially deadly.
Cities are centres of industrialization and sources of emissions, but they are also home to solutions.  More and more municipalities are harnessing wind, solar and geothermal energy, contributing to green growth and improving environmental protection.
Local efforts are critical to success, but they must be supported by international initiatives.  We have already seen progress, including the creation of the Climate Change Adaptation Fund and adoption of the action plan to Reduce Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation, known as “REDD plus”.  All countries agree on the goal of limiting global temperature rise to below 2° C.  Developed and developing countries have committed to lower greenhouse gasses in a formal, accountable international agreement.
Now we need to build on these advances.  The United Nations Climate Change Conference in Durban this December must achieve decisive progress.  Urbanization will be on the agenda at next year’s “Rio+20” United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development.
On this observance of World Habitat Day, let us reaffirm our commitment to the important journey to a more sustainable future, and let us focus greater attention on addressing climate change in the world’s cities and beyond.
Ban Ki-moon

Thursday, 29 September 2011

World Maritime Day - 26 to 30 September 2011

World Maritime Day 2011: Piracy: Orchestrating the response

ПИРАТСТВО: ОРГАНИЗАЦИЯ ОТВЕТНЫХ ДЕЙСТВИЙ
 Journée mondiale de la mer 2011 "Piraterie : orchestrer la réponse "
 Día Marítimo Mundial 2011 - "Piratería: Articular la respuesta" 
2011 年世界海事日- 海盗:协调行动,共同应对
يوم البحرية العالمي لعام 2011 القرصنة : تنسيق جهود المواجهة
Every year IMO celebrates World Maritime Day. The exact date is left to individual Governments but is usually celebrated during the last week in September. The day is used to focus attention on the importance of shipping safety, maritime security and the marine environment and to emphasize a particular aspect of IMO's work. 



World Maritime Day 2011 will be observed during the week of 26 to 30 September.  At the Organization’s Headquarters, the Day will be celebrated on Thursday, 29 September 2011. 
The Action Plan to promote the 2011 World Maritime Day theme was launched on 3 February 2011. An update was presented on 21 July 2011.
The 2011 World Maritime Day parallel event will be celebrated in Rome, Italy from 13 to 14 October 2011.





World Maritime Day 2011


Piracy: Orchestrating the Response
A message from the Secretary-General of the International Maritime Organization,
Mr. Efthimios E. Mitropoulos
 
As a manifestation of its overall concern about safeguarding human life at sea, the Organization has chosen, as the theme for this year’s World Maritime Day, to highlight the efforts it has been making, over several years, to meet the challenges of modern-day piracy and, in so doing, generate a broader, global response to eradicate it. The intention has also been to complement and continue work in the spirit of last year’s theme, which was dedicated to seafarers.
From the early 1980s until recently, the anti-piracy campaign of IMO was focused on the traditional hot spots of the Straits of Malacca and Singapore and the South China Sea. Through a series of measures, developed and implemented with the strong and much appreciated co-operation of the littoral States and the unreserved support of the shipping industry, the scourge of piracy in those waters has significantly reduced nowadays.
However, this thorny issue has lately manifested itself in other parts of the world, most notably – but not exclusively – in the waters off the coast of Somalia, the Gulf of Aden, the Arabian Sea and the wider Indian Ocean.  Ships carrying oil out of the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman are now firmly within the sights of pirates, who have become bolder, more audacious, more aggressive and violent and seem to be better organized than ever before.
All these disconcerting and worrying developments have, if anything, strengthened our determination to meet the challenge, as we believe that we can use the experience gained and the successes achieved in reducing piracy elsewhere in the world to good effect in the current arena too – but, to do so, requires a well devised and coordinated response.
Kidnap and ransom is the modus operandi in the Somali case and, in a continuously fluctuating situation, there are several hundred seafarers currently being held hostage on board hijacked ships, with their time in captivity averaging six months.
A recent study has revealed the shocking statistics that, during 2010 alone, 4,185 seafarers were attacked by pirates using firearms, even rocket propelled grenades; 1,090 were taken hostage; and 516 were used as human shields. No fewer than 488 were reported suffering significant psychological or physical abuse.
Moreover, while innocent seafarers bear the brunt of these crimes, the world economy suffers too – an annual cost that is now estimated to be between 7 billion and 12 billion US dollars. And, with more than 12 per cent of the total volume of oil transported by sea flowing through it, the strategic importance of the Gulf of Aden can be severely affected, while ships, electing to divert via the Cape of Good Hope to avoid being attacked by pirates, face significantly longer voyages with all the associated costs and environmental consequences.
It is for all these reasons that IMO has decided to make combating piracy not only the theme for World Maritime Day but also a central theme of its work this year and for as long as necessary.  To this effect, we have developed a multi-faceted action plan designed to address the problem at several different levels and are proceeding with its implementation in an orchestrated manner – a reflection of the fact that the problem has become too entrenched and deep-rooted to be solved by any single entity.
The United Nations, alliances (political and defence) of States, Governments acting collectively or individually, military forces, shipping companies, ship operators and ships’ crews, all have a crucial part to play in order to rid the world of the threat posed by piracy in the vast expanse of the Indian Ocean.
To alleviate this unacceptable situation, no effort should be spared. Shipping companies must ensure that their ships rigorously apply the IMO guidance and industry-developed Best Management Practices in their entirety, so that, when venturing into the western Indian Ocean region, they comply with all the recommended measures: no ship is invulnerable, in particular those with relatively low freeboards and slow steaming speeds. And Governments need to back up their oft-stated concern over the situation by deploying military and other resources commensurate, in numbers and technology, with the scale of the problem and with a realistic chance of dealing with it effectively.
While IMO has positioned itself in the epicentre of the concerted efforts being made, it cannot alone supply an instant solution to the issue – particularly since, although piracy manifests itself at sea, the roots of the problem are to be found ashore. Nevertheless, through our action plan and other initiatives, and in collaboration with other interested parties, equally determined and committed as ourselves, we feel confident we will be able to make a difference where the problem is being most acutely felt – at sea.
Some success in thwarting pirate attacks can already be claimed, as can be seen from the falling percentage of attacks that prove successful. Nevertheless, as the statistics so bleakly indicate, piracy and armed robbery against ships remain real and ever-present dangers to those who use the seas for peaceful purposes. So long as pirates continue harassing shipping, hijacking ships and seafarers, we are neither proud of, nor content with, the results achieved so far.
More needs to be done, including the capture, prosecution and punishment of all those involved in piracy; the tracing of ransom money; and the confiscation of proceeds of crime derived from hijacked ships, if the ultimate goal of consigning piracy to the realms of history is to be achieved. We hope that our choice of the theme for 2011 will provide an appropriate rallying point around which all those who can make a difference can focus their efforts. 
In the meantime, our thoughts and prayers are with those seafarers, who, at present, are in the hands of pirates.  May they all be released unharmed and returned to their families soon.

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Health and the Millennium Development Goals: from Commitment to Action.

Since 2003, the Annual Report of the Director of the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization has focused on a specific area of PAHO/WHO's technical cooperation, providing an in-depth analysis of a key aspect of the Organization's wide-ranging work as well as a conceptual lens through which to report its many projects, activities, and achievements.

The focus of this year's report—the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)—was chosen for two reasons. As a global mandate that reflects and reinforces the Organization's core values and orientation, the MDG framework has given increased impetus and direction to PAHO/WHO's technical cooperation throughout the past decade.

In addition, the period covered by this year's report—2010-2011—coincides with the two-thirds mark between the Millennium Declaration and the 2015 end date proposed for achieving the MDGs. With just five years remaining, it is a fitting moment to review progress toward achieving the MDGs in Latin America and the Caribbean, as well as PAHO/WHO's support for its member countries' efforts and lessons that can be used to accelerate progress over the next few years.

CGIs Plenary 2011






Tuesday, September 20 - Wednesday, September 21  -  Thursday, September 22

The Road to Refuge

Fifty years after the adoption of the UN Convention on Refugees, the decade we live in has seen more of the world's people than ever before seeking refuge from war, persecution or disaster. This special report tells the stories behind the statistics, using first-person testimonies and in-depth interviews to trace the journey from home into exile. It asks why refugees are still fleeing, where they go, and examines how we treat them.

Persecution
The Journey
Life in a foreign land
The way ahead
World Service radio series

Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Proteger los bosques, combatiendo el cambio climático: en busca de lecciones en el Amazonas

Rodeado por un arco de deforestación que se extiende en el Amazonas, observa a un equipo de investigadores que busca lecciones que podrían ayudar a dar forma a un esquema global conocido como REDD, y que podría resultar en la entrega de miles de millones de dólares de los países ricos a los países pobres para salvar sus bosques


FORESTRY - Speeches at forest Indonesia Conference ( Jakarta)

Jakarta 27,September 2011 - Forest Indonesia Conference

Alternative futures to meet demand for food,fibres,fuel and REDD+


Andrew Steer, Special Envoy for Climate Change, The World Bank



Dr Sulilo Bambang Yudoyono, former vice-President of the Republic of Indonesia



Eric Solheim, Norway's minister for Environment and International Development


Jim Paice, Uk's State minister at the Department for Environment,Food and Rural Affairs.


Zulkifli Hasan, Ministry of Forestry of the Republic of Indonesia



Frances Seymour, Director General of Cifor

Center for International Forestry Research


CIFOR is an international research and global knowledge institution committed to conserving forests and improving the livelihoods of people in the tropics.

Monday, 26 September 2011

About Rivers


Rivers provide many of the essentials for human life - fresh water, food, natural highways, and fun - but living by a river can be a risky business. Whether it’s the Amazon River in South America, the Ganges in India, or the Bani in Mali, rivers dictate a way of life for the people who live on their shores.
Photo from Human Planet
Fisherman Sam Niang risks his life on his home-made high wire so he can reach a prize fishing position over the flood-waters of the Mekong River in Laos.

Humans have always been drawn to rivers. They flow through every environment on earth, bringing us many of the essentials of life including water, food, and transport. But while rivers give, they can also take away. Flood, freezing, drought and total disappearance have all pushed human ingenuity to new heights.

In Mali, North Africa, a craftsman named Ouseman depends on the river for his livelihood. He’s a master mason in Djenne, an ancient city built entirely from river mud. Ouseman is responsible for the upkeep of the city’s Great Mosque, the biggest and oldest mud building in the world, and the centre of Ouseman’s culture.

Every year, down in the dry river bed, the mud is blended with rice husks and left to ferment until it is just the right consistency to provide the mosque with a fresh coat of mud. In a race against time, the whole town mucks in, running up ladders with buckets of wet mud, to give the mosque a fresh coat of mud before the rains come.

In Meghalaya, Northern India, rivers play a different role in people’s lives since Meghalaya is officially the wettest place on earth. During the monsoon season, locals endure so much rain that flooding rivers threaten to isolate communities for months on end. Luckily, the local people have found a most magical and unexpected solution. They train the roots of strangler figs to form beautiful living bridges over the floodwaters.

But no change in landscape compares to that of the Amazon rainforest. With around 20% of the world’s total river flow passing through it, the Amazon is the largest river on Earth. In fact, it is so large that when it floods each year, the sheer volume and weight of the water creates an incredible 7.5cm dip in the planet’s crust.

No wonder then that people worship rivers and their seemingly-miraculous life-giving powers. For Hindus, the Ganges remains at the very heart of their faith and represents the eternal cycle of life, death and rebirth. When a Hindu dies, the most auspicious site for cremation is on the banks of the Ganges, where a person’s body can then be returned to the same waters that helped bring it to life in the first place.

For the more frivolous of us, rivers can simply be a wonderful source of fun. Several times a year, in the south-west of England, hundreds of surfers gather on the River Severn to ride the famous Severn Bore. Literally a tidal wave, it travels up the river for many miles providing entertainment for surfers and watchers alike.

 

Related BBC links

ENVIRONMENT : Rivers ( River Wandle)

Helen Mark seeks a sense of being 'away from it all' more usually associated with the countryside on the banks of the River Wandle, which flows into the Thames at Wandsworth.
 


The sacred Ganges river provides spiritual and physical sustenance for millions, but today it is filthy. Tom Heap asks if World Bank dollars can change India's life source.

ENVIRONMENT : Rivers ( Fertile river plains)

The flood-cycle of the River Ganges helps to keep the surrounding land fertile.

ENVIRONMENT : Rivers ( River erosion)

During the wet season villagers living on the banks of the Ganges must move their houses quickly before they're washed away.

ENVIRONMENT : Rivers ( Hindu cremation)

When a Hindu leaves the world the most auspicious place to be cremated is the banks of the Ganges.

ENVIRONMENT : Rivers ( Dry season in the Ganges Delta)

Life changes in the Ganges Delta during dry season when the river level drops by 6 meters in 6 months and some tributaries dry up completely.

ENVIRONMENT : Rivers ( Surfing the Severn bore)

Matt comes face-to-face with the tidal wave which makes its way up the river several times a year. It is a natural phenomenon that mystified ancient people and is still a draw for thrill seekers today.

ENVIRONMENT : Rivers (Stone secrets)

Where have the rivers that sculpted Yorkshire's limestone pavements gone?

ENVIRONMENT : Rivers ( Fishing at Victoria Falls)

To avoid the dangerous animals of the Zambezi river Josphat and his brothers have opted for an alternative place to fish where elephants, crocodiles and hippos don’t dare go.

ENVIRONMENT : Rivers ( High wire fishing )

During monsoon season the Mekong swells to 20 times its normal volume which brings more fish but makes them harder to catch. Sam Niang built a tightrope to reach the best fishing perch.

ENVIRONMENT : Rivers ( Ice-blasting in Ottawa )

At the end of each winter, explosives experts lay dynamite in the icy river that runs through the heart of Ottawa, Canada, to prevent melt-water floods.

ENVIRONMENT : Rivers ( Acoustic River.)

Chris Watson creates a living soundscape of Northumberland's Coquet River.

ENVIRONMENT : Rivers ( Revitalised river)

The Tyne clean up has made way for a thriving salmon population.

ENVIRONMENT : Rivers (Gharial guardian)

As her babies prepare to hatch and call to her, a mother gharial digs into her nest to help them. The babies continue to call as they hatch. Gharials are devoted mothers. The mother gharials take turns to guard a creche of babies in the Chambal river. Includes shots of Valmik Thapar riding an elephant past the Taj Mahal.

Friday, 23 September 2011

World Rivers Day - September 26


    The world's rivers are in crisis, according to in Nature. The study combines, for the first time, water security and biodiversity for all of the world's rivers, many of which are severely degraded.

World's Major Rivers

Rivers worldwide in peril: society treats symptoms, ignores causes


Water Resource Development

* Dams alter downstream movement of sediment and nutrients, and block fish migrations.
* Water withdrawals reduce the flow in riversn leaving them completely dry in some cases.
* Water Scarcity can diminsh human quality of life and limit food production.
* Disrupting natural cycle of water flow decreases floodplain fertility and eliminates fish breeding grounds.


Biotic Factors

* Introduced species can transform river habitats and biological communities.
* Fishing pressure can remove large fish from rivers, leaving impoverished food webs.
* Aquaculture can pollute rivers with nutrients and chemicals, and serve as source of invasive species.


Pollution

* Nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus can encourage nuisance algal blooms.
* Mercury, pecticides, acids, and salts can be toxic to river animals and plants.
* Organic Material can lead to oxygen depletion of water sediments can  coat river bottoms and block light.
* Industrial discharges can increase water temperatures.


Catchment Disturbance

*Conversion of forests and grasslands to agricultural fields change water flows and riveside habitat.
* Roads, buildings and other man-made surfaces block rainfall from entering groundwater, and pollute runoff.
* Lifestock trample riverside habitat and river channels, and introduce harmful microbes
* Disconnecting wetlands and floodplains from rivers reduces flood protection.


     The Importance of River Water The world’s lakes and flowing rivers constitute just one percent of the planet’s water. The fresh water in rivers is vital to all land base life. But population pressures are putting major water waste under stress. Rivers provide drinking water and water for agricultural purposes and since the beginning of human civilization, rivers have been used for transport and cities have grown on their banks.
     Rivers, now an integral part of the water cycle where fresh water, falling as rain or snow flows to the oceans to be evaporated by warmth from the sun forming clouds which release rain. All plant and animal life depends on this cycle. Africa’s River Nile is the longest river in the world. Since ancient’s times, the Nile has been a lifeline for the people and animals along its 6,800 kilometer length. Ten countries shares the Nile but the Nile water agreement of 1929 granted Egypt, the lion share of the Nile’s waters.
     The treaty was signed when 67 year old Banabus Equatus parents with children. His one acre farm near Canyons Lake Victoria has been in the family for generations. He is the only one in his area that defies the water treaty and irrigated his land. The treaty has been criticized by east African countries as a colonial relic that impedes development in upstream countries. Some says the treaty is stopping him from expanding his farm. Lake Victoria is the source of the White Nile, the longest branch of the Nile. It’s the world’s largest tropical lake and is an important transport hub for Uganda, Tanzania and Kenya. Uganda, Ruwanda, Verandi, Kenya, Tanzania, Ethiopia, the Congo, Sudan and Egypt all rely on the Nile for agriculture. The Egyptian capital Cairo sits on the banks of the Nile and because of the treaty, it convict any upstream irrigation plans that could threatened the Nile’s levels. 
    Over 95% of Egypt’s water comes from the river and most Egyptian’s lived in the third tile Nile of Valley though it makes up only 4% of Egypt’s available land. The country’s population is growing to the Egypt’s need for water will continue to increase. But many of the sub-Saharan countries have been pushing for what they say would be a fairer use of the Nile’s waters. The fair sharing of the waters from international water waste is a growing issue around the world. In fact that Egypt at the end of Nile has so much control has more to do with international politics in the early 20th century when the treaty was drafted. Every year, the Nile floods bringing with it replenishing nutrients that act as a natural fertilizer. 
    In 2004, an international expedition sits off and navigates the White Nile from source to sea for the first time in history. The five person teams sponsored by KIA international are from Ireland, New Zealand, and South Africa. In some places, the settle the Nile expedition needed help from the local people to carry their specially constructed drafts around the difficult stretches of the upper river. They started from Bujagali falls in Jinja Uganda, to follow the river from Lake Victoria through Sudan and finally to Egypt and the Mediterranean. After some particularly turbulent stretches of the Nile and Uganda’s falls Natural Park retained to have timeout to ponder the dangers ahead. One of the biggest problems in this path of the Nile with a hippos and elephants would enjoy bathing in the river. Wherever the cruise stop, they drew crowds of curious own lookers. One reason for the expedition was to promote harmony amongst the people of the Nile. The team was equipped with two five meter self bailing inflatable rafts. As the Nile broad and then slowed, the rafters had to start paddling. 
    To previous expeditions using collapsible canoes were force to carry their craft for large path of the journey. Four months later, after coming to deserts, for war zones and jungles, the two craft were motoring through the Nile’s biggest city Cairo. Great explorers of the 19th century had struggled to map the world’s longest river. The rigid wooden boats could not cope with the turbulent waters of the apple White Nile. But other places, the river disappears into broad mashed lands. To settle the Nile expedition had come through about 46 of particularly set of treacherous rapids at one stage loosing a pedal to the jaws of a crocodile. All 16 members had been living in east Africa for at least five years. Between them, they could boast an incredible 50 years of white water and expedition experienced. Soon after the Nile passes through the Egyptian capital, it breaks into distributaries that found out which reach delta region. 
    The grip would emerge into the Mediterranean at Rosetta. The city that gave its name to the Rosetta stone had led to the deciphering of hieroglyphics. The Nile is unusual and its last tributary joined at halfway along its length in the Sudan. The Nile at Cairo is actually a smaller river than it is in the Sudan. The realtors described Egypt as the gift of the Nile because of this great river, the early inhabitants of Egypt were able to settle and establish a width base agriculture that led to the development of the ancient Egyptian civilization. Despite 8,000 years of human activity on its banks, they settle the Nile expedition was the first to navigate the Nile entire length. Since the Roman Empire, people have been seeking the headwaters of the Nile back until the 19th century expeditions have been unable to penetrate the sued marshlands in the Sudan. After a brief stay in Cairo, the rafters finished the last 200 kilometers stretch to Rosetta in the Mediterranean in around ten days with a complete voyage along the Nile had taken 18 weeks. A film about their journey called the longest river was released the following year.





Map of Danube and Rhine River

    The Rivers helped the Roman Empire in the same way they hurt the Empire.
     Rivers were the natural 'highways' in ancient times. Boats could carry products for trade back and forth along these natural routes. Settlements, based primarily on trade, would often spring up along river banks where a natural setting existed for the construction of docks to on/off-load ships.
    Unfortunately rivers were also highways which could be used to transport (both friendly and unfriendly) troops intent on doing war. The mountains were important as they provided a natural fortress wall complete with surveillance 'towers'.


Map of the Colorado (USA-Mexico), Columbia (USA-Canada), Nelson-Saskatchewan (USA-Canada), and Mississippi (USA) River
     
    The North American continent contains the world's greatest inland waterway system. The Mississippi River rises in northern Minnesota and flows 2,348 miles (3,778 kilometers) down the center of the United States to the Gulf of Mexico. The Missouri River, formed by the junction of three rivers in southern Montana, runs 2,466 miles (3,968 kilometers) before it joins the Mississippi just north of St. Louis, Missouri. The Ohio River, formed by the union of two rivers at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, flows 975 miles (1,569 kilometers) before emptying into the Mississippi at Cairo, Illinois. The Mississippi, with all of its tributaries, drains 1,234,700 square miles (3,197,900 square kilometers) from all or part of 31 states in the United States. From the provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan in Canada, the Mississippi drains about 13,000 square miles (33,670 square kilometers). 

     Other chief rivers in North America include the Yukon (Alaska and Canada); Mackenzie, Nelson, and Saskatchewan (Canada); Columbia and St. Lawrence (Canada and U.S.); Colorado, Delaware, and Susquehanna (U.S.); and Rio Grande (U.S. and Mexico).
     North America contains more lakes than any other continent. Dominant lakes include Great Bear, Great Slave, and Winnipeg (Canada); the Great Lakes (Canada and U.S.); Great Salt Lake (U.S.); Chapala (Mexico); and Nicaragua (Nicaragua). The Great Lakes, a chain of five lakes, are Superior, Michigan, Huron, Erie, and Ontario. Superior, northernmost and westernmost of the five, is the largest lake in North America and the largest body of freshwater in the world. Stretching 350 miles (560 kilometers) long, the lake covers about 31,820 square miles (82,410 square kilometers). It has a maximum depth of 1,302 feet (397 meters).


Map of the Amazon and La Plata (Parana) River

    The Plata Basin is structured along the major population and production demographic group in South America. With almost 130 million inhabitants, some 50 large cities and an economy that represents 70% of GDP per capita of the five countries, is of major economic and social importance. But according to a recent report by Unesco, “the increase of poverty remains the most important social issue facing the countries that comprise it.”
    The lower income sector, especially poor people, has a high dependence on natural resources, thus its deterioration provokes losses in household income  and diminish of opportunities. To mention only two examples, overfishing at unsustainable rates for export causes a drop of fishery resources in the lower Parana along with negative social impacts, the expansion of clearings and large-scale monocultures impact on family farming and rural emigration aggravating overcrowding in marginal areas of big cities.


    Many of Asia's major rivers begin in the Himalaya Mountains, the largest being the Yangtze. The Brahmaputra River, the world's fourth largest, flows through China, India, and Bangladesh. The Ganges River, the fifth largest, flows 1,560 miles from the Himalayas to the Bay of Bengal. India and China have had numerous disputes over China's failure to warn those downstream of floods in Tibet, which have taken lives along the Brahmaputra. In Southeast Asia, the Mekong River flows through China, Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam, where the lower Mekong basin is the world's most productive fishery. There are concerns over China's plans for hydro-power diversions in the headwaters of the Ganges, Brahmaputra, and Mekong Rivers, which would affect Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, and Vietnam.


Map of Jordan and Tigris- Euphrates Rivers

    Despite the great size of the Middle East, there are only three rivers that can be classified as large by world standards-the Nile, the Euphrates, and the Tigris. The watersheds of both the Euphrates and the Tigris are situated within the Middle East, predominantly in the countries of Turkey, Syria, and Iraq .
    The Euphrates, which is the longest inter-state river in western Asia, has been developed since 4000 B.C. Several ancient civilizations in Mesopotamia were supported by basin irrigation from the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers. Owing to the extremely arid climate, however, the farm lands on the Mesopotamian alluvials have suffered from salt accumulation and waterlogging problems since 2400 B.C., during the Sumerian age. This ancient civilization disappeared with the abandonment of irrigation-canal systems. The washing out of accumulated salts, or leaching as it is called, can be carried out only with an efficient

Map of the Nile River

The River Nile is about 6,670 km (4,160 miles) in length and is the longest river in Africa and in the world. Although it is generally associated with Egypt, only 22% of the Nile’s course runs through Egypt.
In Egypt, the River Nile creates a fertile green valley across the desert. It was by the banks of the river that one of the oldest civilizations in the world began. The ancient Egyptians lived and farmed along the Nile, using the soil to produce food for themselves and their animals.



Map of the Murray Darling River

The three longest rivers in Australia all run through the Murray-Darling Basin. These are:
The Basin has a big variety of climatic conditions and its highly diverse landscapes range from sub-tropical conditions in the far north, cool humid eastern uplands, high alpine country of the Snowy Mountains, the temperate south-east, to the hot and dry semi-arid and arid western plains.



Thursday, 22 September 2011

CGI 2011 - Video Library