Drop by drop...

Maude Barlow is head of the Council of Canadians, Canada's largest public advocacy organization, and founder of the Blue Planet Project. Deeply concerned about water and access to water, Barlow is a recipient of Sweden's Right Livelihood Award (the "Alternative Nobel") and a Lannan Cultural Freedom Fellowship,

Her new book, written with Tony Clarke, is Blue Covenant: The Global Water Crisis and the Coming Battle for the Right to Water, a sequel to Blue Gold, also published by Books for Change, Bangalore. In Blue Gold, Barlow and Clarke exposed how a handful of corporations are gaining ownership and control of the earth's dwindling water supply, depriving millions of people around the world of access to this most basic of resources and accelerating the onset of a global water crisis.

Blue Covenant describes a powerful response to this trend: the emergence of an international, grassroots-led movement to have water declared a basic human right, something that cannot be bought or sold for profit. This movement, which is gaining popular and political support across the globe, encompassing protests in India against U.S. bottling giant Coca-Cola; in Bolivia against the water privatization scheme of European water conglomerate Suez; against the use of water meters in South Africa; and over groundwater mining in Barrington, New Hampshire, and dozens of other communities in North America. With great passion and clarity, Barlow traces the history of these international battles, documents the life-and-death stakes involved in the fight for the right to water, and lays out the actions that we as global citizens must take to secure a water-just world: a blue covenant for all.

Books For Change, Rs 250. ISBN: 978-81-8291-063-8

Another new title, also on water, and also from BfC is Poverty and Water: Explorations of the Reciprocal Relationship, by David Hemson, Kassim Kulindwa, Haakon Lein and Adolfo Mascarenhas. "Rarely has such a contentious and complex issue emerged in twenty-first century development as that of water. In this book, co-editors David Hemson, Kassim Kulindwa, Haakon Lein and Adolfo Mascarenhas use a global spread of case studies to illustrate that water is not simply an issue of physical scarcity, but rather a complex and politically driven issue with profound future implications, both in the developing world and outside it. The book argues that for the international community to achieve the Millennium Development Goals, governments must step in to protect the rights of the poor. Here, the links between poverty and access to clean water are explored with an eye to political reform that can end the exploitative policies of big business and help to shape a more equitable world for all."

Books for Change. Rs 375, 216 pages, ISBN: 978-81-8291-060-7

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