droughts Archives - State of the Planet

cape town reservoir Theewaterskloof Dam

Cape Town Water Crisis Highlights a Worldwide Problem

Upmanu Lall, director of the Columbia Water Center, explains South Africa’s water shortage and why places in the U.S. could be at risk, too.

by |February 9, 2018

Photo Essay: The Dead Sea, Living Waters and Megadrought

Thousands of years before Biblical times, during a period when temperatures were unusually high, the lands around the Dead Sea now occupied by Israel, Jordan and surrounding nations suffered megadroughts far worse than any recorded by humans. Warming climate now threatens to return such conditions to this already hard-pressed region.

by |October 31, 2017

Low-cost water management in Ethiopia

Water capture and storage for irrigation has been an ongoing theme of research in Columbia’s earth and environmental engineering department, but Professor Upmanu Lall has recently taken things a step further. With funding from the Pulitzer family, Lall challenged a group of students in his senior engineering course to design a low-cost system of water… read more

by |February 2, 2009