Posted by: Jeff | March 4, 2010

The End of the World, Con’t. (At Least for Yemen)

From Marginal Revolution, a quote from The Guardian:

The bitter and mildly narcotic qat leaf is key to Yemen’s economy, and yet its enormous need for water is on course to make the capital, Sana’a, the first in the world to die of thirst. With the problem extending across the nation, the country is almost literally chewing itself to death.

Most experts predict Sana’a, the fastest-growing capital in the world at 7% a year, will run out of economically viable water supplies by 2017. That is the same year the World Bank says Yemen will cease earning income from its oil, which currently accounts for three-quarters of the state’s revenues.

Rising poverty and discontent is already blamed for increasing al Qaeda activity in Yemen.  If wells run dry and water sources evaporate, expect poverty and political violence in Yemen to become even worse.

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