WATER AND PEACE: Is Peace Possible in an era of Diminishing Water Supplies?
Annual Peace Conference to Focus on Water Issues

Water is so essential for life that wars have been fought over it. And the accelerating pace of climate change all but guarantees that conflicts over water resources will become more frequent, widespread and intense. Even Nebraska, which sits atop one of the largest fresh-water aquifers in the world, is not exempt from this social and economic tension, as evidenced by the ongoing dispute in the Republican River basin.

Our increasingly precious water resources will be the subject of the keynote presentation entitled “Water and Peace: Is Peace Possible in an Era of Diminishing Water Supplies?” at the 2014 Annual Peace Conference in Lincoln Saturday, October 4. A panel of four individuals will provide an overview of Nebraska’s current water supply and use, projections for future availability, the social and economic impact of water (and food) shortages both here and internationally, and possible local and state initiatives to address this looming peril.

Dr. Ann Bleed, past director of the Nebraska Department of Natural Resources, is a hydrologist and expert on state and regional water policy. Professor Clint Rowe is a UNL climatologist and co-author of the university’s climate assessment that was released September 25. Retired UNL professor and NFP president emeritus Paul Olson is one of the premier authorities on peacemaking in the state. And State Senator Ken Haar, District #21, is the Nebraska Legislature’s leading environmental advocate. Together these four speakers will provide a well-rounded perspective on the challenge climate change and resource scarcity present to human society and the earth’s increasingly stressed ecosystem. The morning keynote presentation will be followed in the afternoon by an array of Peace & Justice Workshops on timely political topics, including food security.

The 2014 peace conference is co-sponsored by the University of Nebraska-Omaha Grace Abbott School of Social Work and will run from 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. at the Center for People in Need, 3901 N. 27th Street. Registration cost, which includes breakfast and lunch, is just $30. Click HERE for information on how to early register, or contact the NFP State Office directly at 402-475-4620.

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