chapter  5
26 Pages

Asia—a densely populated continent

ByMalin Falkenmark, Gunnar Lindh

Asia covers about one-third of the earth’s surface but has nearly two-thirds of its population. The continent incorporates many different kinds of topography. This chapter focuses on the water problems of some of the heavily populated countries of South and East Asia. South Asia derives the greater part of its precipitation from the southwest monsoon, which blows from the Indian Ocean. This monsoon is made up of two moisture currents. The Green Revolution came to India in the 1960s. It first gathered speed on the fertile plains of the northwest and south, where groundwater was readily available for the necessary irrigation. Documents from the Rome conference give the following outline of the future prospects of Asia. Demand for food is expected to rise more rapidly in the Near East than in any other developing region. The most immediate requirement in these areas is to achieve better management of the water resources which have been harnessed through the existing irrigation arrangements.