Africa land deals lead to water giveaway

Africa - 12/06/2012

Africa heads for 'hydrological suicide' as land deals hand water resources to foreign firms, threatening environmental disasterMillions of people will lose access to traditional sources of water because of "land grabs" in Africa, according to a report on Monday that looks behind the scramble for farmland in Africa.The report: Squeezing Africa dry: behind every land grab is a water grab, shows how land deals, covering millions of acres of fertile lands, also pose a threat to Africa's fresh water systems."If these land grabs are allowed to continue, Africa is heading for a hydrological suicide," said Henk Hobbelink, co-ordinator of Grain, a group that backs small farmers.The report ? the latest to raise the alarm over competition for scarce water resources ? said all land deals in Africa involve large-scale industrial agriculture operations that will consume massive amounts of water, could rob millions of people of their access to water and risk the depletion of the continent's most...