Land Deal Brief: Land Grabs Leave Africa Thirsty
Read the press release: The Oakland Institute and Polaris Institute Sound an Alarm for Africa's Water Supply
Cheap land and fairly easy access to water make Africa attractive for industrial agriculture. Investors see Africa as an “uncrowded space of opportunities,” and the prospect of accessing abundant water resources is a focal point in business plans. Some firms are explicit that they are as much agricultural land investors as they are investors in water supplies. Others say that they only select land which has access to water for large-scale irrigation and that land only has value if water is available. The availability of water gains further meaning as estimates show that the increased requirements for food to feed the world’s population – exceeding 7 billion – will outpace existing water resources by 40 percent by 2030.