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Ethno-Political Ecology

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Ecology - Natural Resources Transboundary Issues

Item Beyond Boundaries: Regional Overview of Transboundary Natural Resource Management in Eastern Africa - Transboundary natural resource management (TBNRM) is gaining currency as environmentalists and policymakers recognize the limitations of existing national natural resource management programs, policies, and laws.  This study provides an overview of policies, laws, and programs for TBNRM in the Eastern Africa Region. An important point to note is that the national boundaries are not sensitive to ecological issues; they do not take ecosystems into account. This overview is followed by two very different case studies from two distinct practitioners: The first case study, on the Minziro-Sango Bay Forest (MSBF) TBNRM Area across the Tanzania-Uganda border, describes the evolution of a specific transboundary project, funded by the GEF through UNDP, which addresses the policy-enabling environment for cross-borders conservation of forest biodiversity.  The second case study was prepared by an International NGO with a long history of conservation involvement in the region—AWF. African Wildlife Foundation staff members chronicle their experience with conservation, focusing on what is developing as a coherent program—the Kilimanjaro Heartland across the Kenya-Tanzania border.


Item France diplomatie [L'eau : Les Enjeux] - La gestion des ressources en eau reste un des défis majeurs de l'humanité, et la coopération internationale y consacre une part importante de ses moyens. Les enjeux de cette gestion sont importants et les thèmes qu'elle traite sont typiques du développement. Les enjeux de la gestion de l'eau peuvent être décrits en termes sanitaires, alimentaires, sociaux, économiques, financiers, environnementaux, politiques et géopolitiques. - Enjeux environnementaux: La moitié des grands fleuves et lacs mondiaux est polluée. La moitié des zones humides a disparu depuis le début du 20ème siècle. La biodiversité a diminué de moitié dans les eaux douces. Les aquifères sont de plus en plus surexploités et pollués. L'eau est une ressource naturelle limitée. Cependant la demande augmente et la ressource est de plus en plus dégradée. Les perspectives laissent entrevoir une aggravation de ces tendances. Enfin, les problèmes liés aux changements climatiques concerneront au premier chef la ressource en eau. - Enjeux politiques et géopolitiques: Deux sur trois des grands fleuves ou aquifères (soit plus de 300 dans le monde) sont partagés entre plusieurs pays. Deux personnes sur cinq dépendent de ces eaux partagées. 15% des pays reçoivent plus de 50% de leur eau de pays situés en amont. Peu d'accords internationaux de gestion existent. Toutefois la Convention de Genève de 1949 interdit toute attaque armée sur des barrages.  La poussée urbaine continue : 16% de la population mondiale en 1900, 45% en 1990 et près de 320 villes de plus d'un million d'habitants en 2000. Cela représente 5% de la surface du globe pour 25% des besoins des populations (compte tenu des besoins des industries concentrées dans les zones urbaines).
Item The Water Page
Item L'eau, la vie, l'environnement [Le Cinéma autour du monde] - Collection de films documentaires -
Item Waternet: water, conflict and politics in the Middle East - Water as a source of conflict or cooperation
Item Israel-Jordan Peace Treaty - Art.6 Water -
Item Annex III – Protocol on Israeli-Palestinian Cooperation in Economic and Development Programs - 1. Cooperation in the field of water (1998)
Item Le débat sur la privatisation de l'eau - Kyoto Forum Mondial de l'eau (Radio Canada)
Item The 3rd World Water Forum - Kyoto, Shiga and Osaka, Japan,  March 16-23, 2003
Item Water Privatization in Argentina -  The privatization of water and sanitation in Buenos Aires has been hailed by its neo-liberal proponents as an unprecedented success. This paper takes a deeper and more critical look than many of these accounts. It looks at political and economic changes within Argentina in order to explain the troubling findings regarding the performance of Aguas Argentinas, the private company that won the concession for most of Buenos Aires. The paper begins with a brief overview of the political and economic context in Argentina before describing the process involved in the water privatization in Buenos Aires. It then discusses the outcomes, including changes in coverage and charges to end users as well as impacts on labour and the environment. The paper describes how the promised reduction in water tariffs did not materialize (in fact the opposite occurred) and how agreed-upon targets for expanding sewerage connections and sewage treatment were not met. It also describes how the national government intervened to support the water company in conflicts with the regulatory agency and even by-passed the regulatory agency when the water company wanted to renegotiate the contract. Finally, the role of international financial institutions in this process is discussed.
Item UN Chronicle - The Demise of Mesopotamian Marshlands
Item “Garden of Eden” in Southern Iraq Likely to Disappear Completely in Five Years Unless Urgent Action Taken  - The Mesopotamian marshlands are an integral part of the Tigris-Euphrates river basin, which is shared by Iran, Iraq, Syria and Turkey. UNEP first drew the world’s attention to the demise of the largest wetland ecosystem in the Middle East Mesopotamian marshlands in May 2001 with hard evidence from satellite imagery capturing the shrinkage of the marshlands’ physical extent. The UNEP study revealed that by spring 2000, a one thousand-square kilometre vestige straddling the Iran-Iraq border was all that was left of the extensive wetland complex, which originally covered an area of 15,000 - 20,000 square kilometres.
Item The Mesopotamian Marshlands: Demise of an Ecosystem - 2001complete report - There is no doubt that the disappearance of the Mesopotamian marshlands represents a major environmental catastrophe that will be remembered as one of humanity's worst engineered disasters. It is a devastating account embodying in many respects the environmental crises of our times. This disaster encompasses disputes over water rights; pollution; threats to indigenous communities and to archaeological sites; human rights, environmental refugees and war damages; and declining populations of migratory birds and coastal fisheries. It is hoped that this report will act as a clarion call, sparking fresh debate and opening new lines of communication between Tigris-Euphrates riparian countries, encouraging them to come together and share their precious rivers in a peaceful, socially-equitable and environmentally-sustainable manner."
Item WATER ISSUES BETWEEN TURKEY, SYRIA AND IRAQ - Republic of Turkey, Ministry of Foreign Affairs - official web site
Item The Aral Sea Disaster
Item Aral Sea Ecological Disaster Causes Humanitarian Crisis
Item The Aral Sea Homepage
Item Afghanistan: Post Conflict Environmental Assessment - from UNEP Post Conflict Assessment Unit - The Amu Darya River flows into the north of Afghanistan and forms the border with Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan. The entire basin is estimated to cover 227 800 km2, of which approximately 39 per cent lies in Afghanistan.  In ancient times the Amu Darya was called the Oxus and figured importantly in the history of Persia and in the campaigns of Alexander the Great. The two primary headwaters of the Amu Darya River originate in the high peaks of the Pamir mountains in the Wakhan Corridor. The northern branch, the Pamir River, has its source in Zor Kul Lake, which is shared by Tajikistan and Afghanistan. The southern branch, the Wakhan River, flows out of Chakmatin Lake.  Less than 20 years ago the course of the river ran for 1 200 km before emptying into the Aral Sea. Today the river dries up before reaching the Aral Sea due to excessive extraction of its waters for cotton and hydroelectric production in the bordering central Asian republics. This has been a major factor in the decreased surface area of the Aral Sea, from 68 000 km2 to 28 700 km2, and to decreases in volume from 1 040 km3 to only 181 km3. In addition to its transboundary significance, the Amu Darya River and its tributaries are also a critical source of water supply for the extensive irrigated areas in Afghanistan’s northern fertile plains. About 40 per cent of the country’s irrigated lands lie in this northern region.  Movement toward transboundary cooperation over the management of the Amu Darya began in the 1940s. Two important agreements eventually established the current framework for cooperation: the 1946 Frontier Agreement between Afghanistan and the USSR, and the 1958 Treaty concerning the regime to the Soviet-Afghan frontier, mincluding the Protocol concerning the joint execution of works for the integrated utilization of the water resources in the frontier section of the Amu Darya. These agreements established an international commission to deal with the use and quality of frontier water resources. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, the central Asian republics of Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan inherited the responsibilities of this commission. Afghanistan was not, however, able to make any substantial contributions or commitments on transboundary resources during the period of conflict. Even without the cooperation of Afghanistan, the five central Asian republics have recognized the urgent need to cooperate on water issues. A number of initiatives, including the Interstate Commission for Water Management Coordination (ICWC) and the International Fund for the Aral Sea (IFAS), have been created to conduct transboundary water management. The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) has also established the Special Programme for the Economies of Central Asia
(SPECA) to strengthen cooperation between countries and explore transboundary resource management options. To date, Afghanistan, a fundamental partner to any future transboundary water management agreement, has not participated in any of the discussions.
Item AQUASTAT - FAO's Information System on Water and Agriculture
Item ICCS - International Center for Caspian Studies, based in Brussels, is a non-governmental research organization dedicated to the examination of the economic, social and geopolitical issues of the Caspian Sea Region. Its special focus is on analyzing a wide-range of issues related to the development of the oil and energy resources in the region and its impact on the economic, political and social fabric of the whole Caspian area.  The role of the ICCS is to inform and educate the public and all interested parties in the region and worldwide and create an environment of understanding, discussion and open dialogue that will lead to positive change for all the people of the region.
Item Alliance21: Alliance for a Responsible, Plural and United World
Item UN: Launch of the International Year of Freshwater - 2003
Item International Year of Freshwater - 2003 - Web Site


Item FAO:Agriculture21:Natural resources & environment

Statistics - Africa

Item World Bank - Africa Poverty Monitoring - Survey Navigator - The Africa Household Survey Databank contains 394 Surveys and 3194 Documents - The Document Navigator is primarily used at the World Bank but is designed as a tool to be deployed in national statistical agencies to manage and disseminate survey information. It is part of the Worldbank country databank solution toolbox.
Item THE REFUGEE CRISIS IN AFRICA AND IMPLICATIONS FOR HEALTH AND DISEASE: A POLITICAL ECOLOGY APPROACH - Political violence in civil war and ethnic conflicts has generated millions of refugees across the African continent with unbelievable pictures of suffering and unnecessary death. Using a political ecology framework, this paper examines the geographies of exile and refugee movements and the associated implications for re-emerging and newly emerging infectious diseases in great detail. It examines how the political ecologic circumstances underlying the refugee crisis influences health services delivery and the problems of disease and health in refugee camps. It has four main themes, namely, an examination of the geography of the refugee crisis; the disruption of health services due to political ecologic forces that produce refugees; the breeding of disease in refugee camps due to the prevailing desperation and destitution; and the creation of an optimal environment for emergence and spread of disease due to the chaotic nature of war and violence that produces refugees. We argue in this paper that there is great potential of something more virulent than cholera and Ebola emerging and taking a big toll before being identified and controlled. We conclude by noting that once such a disease is out in the public rapid diffusion despite political boundaries is likely, a fact that has a direct bearing on global health. The extensive evidence presented in this paper of the overriding role of political factors in the refugee health problem calls for political reform and peace accords, engagement and empowerment of Pan-African organizations, foreign policy changes by Western governments and greater vigilance of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in the allocation and distribution of relief aid.
Uganda: The Marginalization of Minorities -

Africa - Diversity - Culture - Conflicts - Refugees

Item HCR - High Commissioner for Refugees
Item INCORE - INCORE guide to Internet sources on conflict and ethnicity - INCORE (International Conflict Research) was set up in 1993 by the University of Ulster and the United Nations University to undertake research and policy work that is useful to the resolution of ethnic, political and religious conflicts. Currently, INCORE's research focuses mainly on post conflict issues, issues of governance and diversity, and research methodology in violent societies.
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