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Is Water the New Oil?


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Is Water the New Oil?

Juliette Jowit

It's hard to imagine why humans would have chosen the achingly arid stone desert of Wadi Faynan for their first settlement. But water would have been one important reason, says archaeologist Steven Mithen. When Neolithic men and women arrived 11,500 years ago, things were very different: the climate was cooler and wetter; the landscape was covered in vegetation including wild figs, legumes and cereals, and there would have been wild goats and ibex for meat.