002 - Conflicts at the international scale

Syllabus Point

Discuss (AO3) an example of an international conflict related to freshwater.
Taken From: http://www.hcn.org/issues/47.4/the-water-czar-who-reshaped-colorado-river-politics/mulroy-map-png/image

Key Terminology

Define the key term below using your textbook 'IB Geography. Course Book' by Nagle and Cooke and the command terms in the classroom.
  • Discuss



Activity One - Case Study

Image One - Article About International Conflict

We will be focusing on the Colorado River which flows through the USA and in to Mexico as our example for an international conflict that has occurred due to access of freshwater. The Colorado River is one of the most litigated rivers in the world and as a consequence water has not flowed into the Gulf of California for over 30 years. Northern Mexico relies on a the USA to manage the water effectively and to pass on high quality water to sustain the wildlife of the Delta. 

The Task

  1. Your task is to develop a case study which discusses the issues of an international conflict related to freshwater. 
  2. There are two aspects to this task; one to research and the other to present the findings to the group.


To do this you will be divided in to two teams. The first team will focus on the causes and consequences of the conflict. The second team will focus on the success and failures of the management schemes to reduce the conflict.

        • Below are a number of clips and articles to start your research off.
        • Record your research in shared googleslides.
        • The presentation can be no more than 5 minutes long.


Useful Resources - Conflict

Watch and read the following articles which outline why the USA and Mexico are in conflict over the water flowing through the Colorado River.

Alexandra Cousteau's Expedition Blue Planet "Death of a River: The Colorado River Delta"



Useful Resources - Management

Watch and read the following articles how the USA and Mexico are trying to solve their international dispute over the water flowing through the Colorado River.

Bringing Back the Colorado River Delta - 2013


Image Two - A Graph to Show the Discharge of the Colorado River entering Mexico
Taken From: http://geo-mexico.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/colorado-flow.jpg

Using an example, examine the impact of an international conflict related to freshwater. (10 marks)

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