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Where is all the water going?

Kathleen Schuster
September 28, 2022

Water shortages are on the rise as drought grips more and more countries across the globe. On this week’s show, we take a closer look at who has the right to water, where water is being weaponized and what governments can do to help people cope.


As weather patterns shift, droughts are becoming more prevalent and more severe across the world.

A recent report by the UN Convention to Combat Desertification estimates that by 2050 nearly 75% of the world could be affected by droughts, forcing over 215 million people to migrate.

It’s against this backdrop that this week’s episode of World in Progress takes a closer look at countries already grappling with water scarcity.

In Chile, people are calling for the constitutional right to water. Meanwhile, Palestinians in the West Bank want reforms surrounding water extraction to finally be implemented.

When it comes to dealing with drought, our guest Simon Levine from the UK-based thinktank ODI points to research in the Horn of Africa. There, social protection programs and social safety nets have become a key component in helping build resilience in the face of natural disaster.

In other parts of the world, water is being weaponized. We look at the example of Burkina Faso.

And finally, a massive drought in Mexico has caused widespread water shortages, pitting civilians against big business and even criminal gangs.

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