Science lecture tackles waterless future

More than 100 people gathered at SOU last week to hear a local aqua ecologist lecture on the future of the world’s water.

“Future wars will be fought over water,” said Dr. Eric Dinger while speaking at last Friday’s weekly science seminar on campus.

The lecture, titled “International Ecology: Mexican Stromatolites and Pakistan Water Politics”, discussed Dr. Dinger’s various exploits. Dinger currently works for the National Park Service in the Klamath Inventory and Monitoring Network.

Dinger talked about water conflicts in the middle east and cautioned that they might be a problem in other parts of the world in the future.

Dinger worked in the region of Kashmir, between India and Pakistan in 2008 on hydroelectric projects.  Kashmir is a dominantly Muslim region in between the two countries, which both lay claim to. They have fought three wars over this territory.

During his time there, Dinger was contracted by Pakistan to combat a tunnel being dug by India to divert water on the Kishaganga River to hydroelectric turbines.

The Kishaganga starts in India and flows over the line of control into the Pakistan side. Pakistan claimed that diverting the water would result in serious repercussions for the environment, and hired Dinger to study the river.

He and his partner had three days and $10,000 to research the potential effects of the water diversion, and display their findings to the Pakistani government.

Dinger also talked about graduate school work he did in Mexico.  He had a a test site where he researched the disappearance of live growing algae rocks called stromatolites.  The rocks have created their own exoskeleton of calcium, and there has been a worldwide disappearance of the rocks in recent years, Dinger said.

The weekly science lectures will continue this Friday with Mark Tveskov, Associate Professor of Anthropology at SOU.  The lecture topic is Zooarchaeology and Holocene Geomorphology on the Oregon Coast.

Each lecture takes place at 4 p.m. in room 118 of the science building.  Refreshments are served 30 minutes before the lecture, and afterwards there is a question and answer period.

The lecture series will run through March 4.


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