I-MAG STS    Corporation
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Back in early 2004 we were actually doing some work on Tajikistani
water management, and we had some concerns about the choice of
crops, especially cotton; the stability of their dams; and the rivers' and
dams' capacity to absorb LOTS more water. Our computer models were
showing ominous projections for markedly lower water quality because
cotton, besides being very thirsty, needs a lot of pesticides and
fertlizers. This was coupled with measurements showing extreme snow
and ice melting, to the point of permanent glacier losses, in the Pamir
and Tien Shan mountains. In a land where 90% of the surface is
mountains and there are over 900 rivers such large scale changes need
careful management. Tajikistan, which was already desperately poor,
had a long civil war  (1991-1997), but, courtesy sales of aluminum and
hydropower, things seemed to slowly be getting better after the famine
of 2001. Nevertheless, we were concerned that a cycle of flood and
famine would cause utter misery.
We ran the same models of the consequences of glacier melt causing
major floods for other countries. As a courtesy, we sent a copy to the
Pakistanti ambassador to the US. Although Benzair Bhutto was out of
power and living in exile we tried to a copy to her as we believed she was
still held in considerable respect. We also thought she would find some
of our suggestions about electricity, medical care and schools of
interest. We noted that Pakistan is very urbanized (after all, they
invented cities) and populous (probably 25 times the population of
Tajikistan) and that Pakistan would have monumental problems that
needed to be addressed sooner rather than later.