[QODLink]
Asia
Turkmenistan's quest for 'white gold'
Country's cotton industry, boosted by Soviet-era projects and government subsidies, becomes thorny issue.
Last Modified: 28 Dec 2011 13:32

Turkmenistan produced more than 1.2 millions tonnes of cotton in 2010, a remarkable feat for a nation that is 80 per cent desert and extremely difficult to farm.

Even so, Soviet-era irrigation programmes and government subsidies have kept up demand for the crop locals call 'white gold'.

Critics say the quest for cotton is unsustainable with Turkmenistan expected to get only drier due to climate change and increasing doubts about its elaborate new irrigation solutions.

Robin Forestier-Walker reports from the Ahal region.

Source:
Al Jazeera
Topics in this article
People
Country
Featured on Al Jazeera
'Justice for All' demonstrations swell across the US over the deaths of African Americans in police encounters.
Six former Guantanamo detainees are now free in Uruguay with some hailing the decision to grant them asylum.
Disproportionately high number of Aboriginal people in prison highlights inequality and marginalisation, critics say.
Nearly half of Canadians have suffered inappropriate advances on the job - and the political arena is no exception.
Featured
Women's rights activists are demanding change after Hanna Lalango, 16, was gang-raped on a bus and left for dead.
Buried in Sweden's northern forest, Sorsele has welcomed many unaccompanied kids who help stabilise a town exodus.
A look at the changing face of North Korea, three years after the death of 'Dear Leader'.
While some fear a Muslim backlash after café killings, solidarity instead appears to be the order of the day.
Victims spared by the deadly disease are reporting blindness and other unexpected post-Ebola health issues.