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Water Wars: Drought, Flood, and the Politics of Thirst
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Water Wars: Drought, Flood, and the Politics of Thirst

3.85  ·  Rating Details ·  73 Ratings  ·  11 Reviews
"This is a wonderful book, a wake-up call of startling clarity and insight, with a flood of facts and anecdotes that place the abstract into riveting human perspective. I will never turn on the rap again without thinking about where water comes from and where it goes." (Ken Burns, producer and director of the Civil War, Baseball, and Jazz documentaries.)

The story of wate
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published August 5th 2002 by Riverhead Hardcover (first published 2002)
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Global Citizenship: Water
10th out of 36 books — 9 voters
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96th out of 101 books — 2 voters

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Community Reviews

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Jul 10, 2009 DoctorM rated it liked it
Shelves: environment
A good introduction to water issues, and one that focuses not just on privatisation issues or concerns over depleted resources, but looks as well at the "other" water wars--- the struggle to preserve places like the Netherlands and Venice, and that looks at irrigation projects not just as a priori environmental sins, but as efforts, even if misguided or badly done, to feed populations and sustain life. Rather light on technical or scientific background, but a balanced general introduction.
Jan 13, 2014 Andy rated it liked it
More about water but the interesting thing, at least for me, is that Ms Ward did not rehash many of the well know battles - Cochabamba, bottled water, French multi-nationals, etc. The stories are all too familiar for people who follow water issues - poor planning, dams and water projects that do more harm than good, and flooding. Talking with experts and "normal" people alike make this book very readable and for those not immersed in the subject.
Sep 19, 2015 Christopher rated it really liked it
A wide overview of how humans have shaped Earth's waterways. While trying to make life better for humans, though, we have made a mess of the Earth's natural systems.
Mar 15, 2011 Bea rated it liked it
It was interesting to read this book right after 'Pillar of sand." There are lots of over-lapping ideas. This book is rather general and would have been improved with some maps and graphics. There is a lot of information about a large variety of water issues in the world. However, I think the title is pretty misleading - it just talks about issues and how people are working (or not) on solving the issues.

I felt more like this book was a series of anecdotes of issues around the word than a cohes
Jul 06, 2015 Michael rated it really liked it
I’m very glad I read this. While I felt I knew a little bit about what was going on with water in the world, the recent drought in California drew me to pick up this book. Wow. There is so much I didn’t know about water and it’s role in the world. From writing about drought in California, to dams in India, to flooding in Bangladesh, the author opened my eyes to both what is going on and what questions and issues need to be thought about in responding to these concerns.
Jan 10, 2008 Chris rated it really liked it
Recommended to Chris by: Yara Tethys
A quite interesting and well-written piece of nonfiction, I read this before the global warming thing really came to be in focus. Much of the information presented here about the use of water for energy amazed me, as well as the depressing facts about how much coal is still used in the world. Of course, it might be different to read it post-Inconvenient Truth- now that people talk about these things all of the time.
Interesting to learn about the water conflicts that are plaguing the modern world. I first started reading this book in 2004 but finally picked it up again in's a little outdated now in the context of global warming and such, but still worth your time.

Good read~living in the Great Lakes this is informative. Also read National Geographic's Water - a Thirsty World.
Will make you think again
Jul 24, 2011 Michelle rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-biology
A very interesting and prescient book.
Bonnie Jeanne
Water Wars by Diane Raines Ward (2003)
Mar 30, 2007 Elena rated it really liked it
comprehensive, well-written book
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