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Clear Water - Mercosur's Underground Treasure

Source:  Copyright 2010, Inter Press Service
Date:  April 8, 2010
Byline:  Marcela Valente
Original URL: Status ONLINE

Invisible beneath a vast area of Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay, the Guaraní Aquifer is one of the world's largest reserves of freshwater. Despite supplying water to millions of people, it is neither contaminated nor overexploited.

"The general health of the aquifer is good, but it is essential to take care of the areas where it is recharged" in order to prevent contaminants from agrochemicals or waste from human settlements from filtering in, Jorge Santa Cruz, an Argentine expert in geology, told Tierramérica.

Santa Cruz, professor at the University of Buenos Aires, served from 2003 to 2009 as the technical coordinator of the Project for the Environmental Protection and Sustainable Development of the Guaraní Aquifer System, under the four countries that sit above the reserve and which make up Mercosur (Southern Common Market).

The governments of the bloc pledged to care for the aquifer and to continue joint efforts for better ...

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