Physical confrontations over water have more than doubled over the past ten years, according to the nonprofit Pacific Institute, who are focused on protecting the world’s fresh water.
Water became a weapon in Syria’s civil war as government forces damaged a water pipeline into the city of Aleppo, leaving millions of people desperately short of water.
The government also bombed water distribution systems in rebel areas. As water supplies dried up, more people were willing literally to fight for what water there was. Russian and ISIS troops also were cited for water-related acts of war.
In India, huge volumes of water are used to grow rice and cotton that are then exported, leaving people high and dry. Also, cities such as Chennai now depend on pricey water trucked in by tankers, leaving the poor to scavenge or steal what they can’t afford. Five farmers were shot in protests over water in a drought-struck region.
Yemen, Iraq, and Indonesia also recorded surges in water-related violence.
The World Resources Institute reports that 17 countries housing 25 percent of the world’s people face “extremely high” water stress, raising the likelihood of future battles over water.
TRENDPOST: As the world’s population increases, land and water become more scarce. Violence over basic necessities will continue to flare. People will demand that access to water be recognized as a human right, gradually forcing governments to create policies and infrastructure projects that protect this resource. The new focus on water will create a new economic sector for innovators and their investors.

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