Historically the source of many conflicts, water grabbing is the control and theft of water resources by the powerful, often at the expense of local populations and ecosystems. It can result in dispossession, displacement and ecological destruction.
In an age of dwindling resources and climate change, water is increasingly being privatised.
It is now 24 years since the United Nations designated March 22 as World Water Day.
Al Jazeera looks at water grabbing in four parts of the globe, including large-scale damming in the Omo Valley in Ethiopia, the mining industry in South Africa, inequitable water practices in Palestine/Israel and the impact of dams on people living along the Mekong River in southeast Asia.