China Faces Growing Water Shortage

China Faces Growing Water Shortage

The shrinking water table beneath China's northern plain is more than just a matter of concern to Beijing's National Development and Reform Commission. It makes strategic planners in Washington nervous too because it increases the likelihood that the Chinese will have to import significantly more grain.

Given China's population of 1.3 billion and the rapidly growing urban middle classes with their rising taste for more western-style meat-oriented diets instead of traditional rice, this threatens to destabilize world grain markets, push up prices and lead to shortages, the Washington-based, internationally funded Worldwatch Institute has speculated.

Water supply is becoming similarly stressed for China's burgeoning neighbor and the world's second most populous country. India, with 1.1 billion people occupying an area one-third the size of the United States, suffers from poor water delivery infrastructure as well as severe ground water contamination. In the capital New Delhi, at least 40 percent of the daily water supply pumped through the city is lost through leaking pipes.

Keep reading for free!

Get instant access to the rest of this article by submitting your email address below. You'll also get access to three articles of your choice each month and our free newsletter:

Or, Subscribe now to get full access.

Already a subscriber? Log in here .

What you’ll get with an All-Access subscription to World Politics Review:

A WPR subscription is like no other resource — it’s like having a personal curator and expert analyst of global affairs news. Subscribe now, and you’ll get:

  • Immediate and instant access to the full searchable library of tens of thousands of articles.
  • Daily articles with original analysis, written by leading topic experts, delivered to you every weekday.
  • Regular in-depth articles with deep dives into important issues and countries.
  • The Daily Review email, with our take on the day’s most important news, the latest WPR analysis, what’s on our radar, and more.
  • The Weekly Review email, with quick summaries of the week’s most important coverage, and what’s to come.
  • Completely ad-free reading.

And all of this is available to you when you subscribe today.