Water security and interstate conflict and cooperation
Seguridad hídrica y conflicto y cooperación interestatales;
Sécurité hydrique, conflits et coopération inter-états
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Tensions and conflicts over water use are increasingly common, as a result of both high water scarcity and high water demand. The use of water resources generates political dis- putes between countries sharing waters within their borders. This paper aims to discuss water security and the interstate conflict and cooperation that can result from it. It is based on an interdisciplinary literature review that aims to contribute to the development of studies on transboundary water policies, encompassing concepts such as water security, water justice and water governance. This article aims to grasp the problems involved in the conflicts and cooperation on shared use of transboundary water resources. It is divided in the following parts: water and international politics; international security, environmental security and water security; and interstate water conflicts and cooperation in the use of shared water resources. Cooperation in the use of transboundary waters might spare distributive conflicts on water use. In situations of scarcity, policies should prioritize human and animal watering, which might relieve water supply issues between riparian countries. On the other hand, water abundance may end up creating more tensions than water shortages, since disputes over its use might emerge instead of cooperation favoring interstate security.