Tag Archives: Dams

The Vanishing Nile: A Great River Faces a Multitude of Threats


Urbanized areas of northern Egypt are visible amidst the deserts of Egypt. The image also shows the Nile River which provides life-sustaining water to the region. Captions and Photo source: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

Excerpts;

The Nile River is under assault on two fronts – a massive dam under construction upstream in Ethiopia and rising sea levels leading to saltwater intrusion downstream.

Environmental degradation is often an underlying cause of international crises and Egypt could become the latest example, with its 95 million people the likely victims of a slow motion catastrophe brought on by grand-scale environmental mismanagement…

Read Full Article; Yale E360 (04-06-2017)

Ethiopian Dam Deal Ignores Science, Warn Experts, SciDevNet (04-18-2015)

Nile Delta Disappearing Beneath the Sea; (01-29-2014)
The IPCC predicts a sea level rise of 28 to 98 centimetres by 2100. Even by the most conservative estimate, this would destroy 12.5 percent of Egypt’s cultivated areas and displace about eight million people, or nearly 10 percent of the population. But it is not just rising sea levels that threaten Egypt’s northern coast, the delta itself is sinking.

In Honduras, Defending Nature Is a Deadly Business

dam-hand
Belo Monte Dam.This photo is part of the AOS MONTES project. Captions and Photo source: ©© André Solnik

Excerpts;

Berta Cáceres fought to protect native lands in Honduras — and paid for it with her life. She is one of hundreds of victims of a disturbing global trend — the killings of environmental activists who try to block development projects.

Most believe it was that campaign, against the Agua Zarca dam on the Gualcarque River, that provided the motive for her murder, one of a rash of recent killings of environmental and social activists in Honduras.

Honduras, says the international human rights group Global Witness, is “the deadliest country in the world to defend the natural world.” At least 109 people have been killed for taking a stand against dams, mines, logging, and agricultural projects in Honduras since a military coup there in 2009 installed a new government.

Global Witness catalogues the killings of environmental and human rights campaigners around the world, and its latest report revealed that 2015 was the most dangerous year on record to be an environmental activist…

Read Full Article, Yale E360 (02-28-2017)

Stealing Turtle Eggs Got People Shot, But The Thievery Continues; National Geographic (12-08-2015)

Sea Turtle Eggs Have Turned Beach into a Battleground, ABC News (11-08-2015)

Indonesia: land right activists killed for protesting illegal sand mining; Protection Online (10-26-2015)
Legal and illegal mining has become a serious concern over the past five years in Indonesia. Such exploitation of natural resources has contributed to a number of human rights violations in Indonesia, such as murder, torture, attacks, illegal detention, land grabbing and forced eviction…

Activist’s action against illegal sand mining near Kihim beach, India; Mumbai Mirror (05-18-2016)
Activist Sumaira Abdulali, who has been threatened and attacked several times for raising the issue of sand mining, continues to raise awareness on the subject, to the local authorities…

Environmental activism gains a foothold in China; Guardian UK (08-31-2012)
Protesters have pushed green issues on to the state agenda, despite a predictably heavy-handed response…

The victory at Standing Rock could mark a turning point; Guardian UK (12-04-2016)
The defeat of an energy company by indigenous activists shows what nonviolent unity can accomplish. There are lessons here as we enter a challenging new age…

Mega Dams Remain Controversial Source of Energy; IPS News (06-09-2016)

The Wrong Climate for Damming Rivers, A Video from Todd Southgate (05-26-2016)
Though large hydropower projects are often presented as a “clean and green” source of energy, nothing could be further from the truth…

Dam projects on world’s largest rivers threaten ecosystems, rural livelihoods; Science Daily (01-08-2016)

12 Dams that Changed the World, Guardian UK (01-13-2015)

DamNation; a Documentary That’s Testing the Waters of Corporate Social Responsibility; Produced by Stoecker Ecological and Felt Soul Media” and presented by Patagonia.

Mass evacuation below Oroville Dam as officials frantically try to make repairs before new storms


Oroville dam spillway, 2012. Photo source: ©© Marcel Archon

Excerpts;

More than 100,000 people were told to evacuate because of a “hazardous situation” involving the Northern California dam’s emergency spillway. At one point, the NWS warned that the auxiliary spillway was expected to fail and could send an “uncontrolled release of flood waters from Lake Oroville…”

Read Full Article, LA Times (02-13-2017)

88,000 evacuated, emergency declared as California’s massive Oroville Dam threatens floods; The Washington Post (02-13-2017)
Even as they fled, however, the flow of water over the spillway halted late in the evening, stabilizing the crisis. But officials warned the damaged infrastructure could create further dangers as storms approach in the week.
Lake Oroville is one of California’s largest man-made lakes, with 3.5 million acre-feet of water and 167 miles of shoreline, and the 770-foot-tall Oroville Dam is the nation’s tallest, about 44 feet higher than the Hoover Dam on the Colorado River…

“This is mother nature kind of kicking us”: Water released over spillway at Calif. dam


About 150 miles northeast of San Francisco, Lake Oroville is one of California’s largest man-made lakes, and the 770-foot-tall Oroville Dam is the nation’s tallest. Photo source: California Department of Water Resources

Excerpts;

Water started flowing over an emergency spillway at the nation’s tallest dam, on Lake Oroville, for the first time Saturday after erosion damaged the Northern California dam’s main spillway…

Read Full Article, CBS News (02-11-2017)

The Wrong Climate for Damming Rivers, Video; Todd Southgate (05-26-2016)

Sediment Trapped Behind Dams Makes Them ‘Hot Spots’ for Greenhouse Gas Emissions, (08-01-2013)

New Global Warming Culprit: Dams (08-08-2012)
Washington State University researchers have documented an underappreciated suite of players in global warming: dams, the water reservoirs behind them, and surges of greenhouse gases as water levels go up and down.

DamNation; a Documentary That’s Testing the Waters of Corporate Social Responsibility; Produced by Stoecker Ecological and Felt Soul Media” and presented by Patagonia.

Movement to Take Down Thousands of Dams Goes Mainstream, National Geographic (01-29-2015)

Dams – Cutting off our Beach Sand; By Gary Griggs (12-19-2014)

Joy as China shelves plans to dam ‘angry river’

dam-construction-china
Chinese companies and Chinese banks are now the biggest builders and financiers of global dam building. Chinese banks and companies are involved in some 307 dams in 74 different countries, particularly in Africa and Southeast Asia, including Kamchay Dam (Cambodia), Bakun Dam (Sarawak, Malaysia), Myitsone Dam (Burma) and Merowe Dam (Sudan). Captions and Photo source: ©© International Rivers

Excerpts;

Environmentalists in China are celebrating after controversial plans to build a series of giant hydroelectric dams on the country’s last free-flowing river were shelved…

Read Full Article, Guardian UK (12-02-2016)

China May Shelve Plans to Build Dams on Its Last Wild River; National Geographic (05-14-2016)

China’s Great Dam Boom: A Major Assault; Yale E360 (12-08-2013)
China is engaged in a push to build hydroelectric dams on a scale unprecedented in human history. While being touted for producing lower-emission electricity, these massive dam projects are wreaking havoc on river systems across China and Southeast Asia…

Small Dams On Chinese River Harm Environment More Than Expected, study finds, NSF (05-30-2013)

Himalayas to Become The Most Dammed Region In The World, IPS News

Coastal Erosion Induced by Human Activities: A Northwest Bohai Sea Case Study, Journal of Coastal Research
Using mooring hydrodynamic observation, cross-shore profiles, and topographic-map and satellite-image comparisons, this study shows dramatic coastal erosion on the Qinhuangdao coast (northeast Bohai Sea, China). Sediment starvation induced by dams mainly caused this fast coastal retreat.

Undamming Rivers: A Chance For New Clean Energy Source; Yale E360 (08-07-2015)
Hydroelectric power is often touted as clean energy, but this claim is true only in the narrow sense of not causing air pollution. In many places, such as the U.S. East Coast, hydroelectric dams have damaged the ecological integrity of nearly every major river…

The Wrong Climate for Damming Rivers, A Video from Todd Southgate (05-26-2016)
Though large hydropower projects are often presented as a “clean and green” source of energy, nothing could be further from the truth…

12 Dams that Changed the World, Guardian UK (01-13-2015)

DamNation; a Documentary That’s Testing the Waters of Corporate Social Responsibility; Produced by Stoecker Ecological and Felt Soul Media” and presented by Patagonia.

Sediment Trapped Behind Dams Makes Them ‘Hot Spots’ for Greenhouse Gas Emissions (08-2013)

Dams – Cutting off our Beach Sand; By Gary Griggs (12-19-2014)

Taking Down Dams and Letting the Fish Flow

elwha-dam
Elwha Dam removal, 2011. The largest dam-removal project in U.S. history—the Elwha River Restoration Project—commenced during the second week of September 2011, when National Park Service contractors began to dismantle two dams on the Elwha River in Washington State. The 32-m-tall Elwha Dam and the 64-m-tall Glines Canyon Dam, completed in 1913 and 1927, respectively, have been blocking the natural supply of sediment to the lower river and coast and severely limiting salmon and steelhead spawning for nearly a century. Captions: Jonathan A. Warrick / USGS. Photograph: © SAF – Coastal Care.

Excerpts;

Nationwide, dam removals are gaining traction. Four dams are slated for removal from the Klamath River alone in California and Oregon by 2020.

Just a few of these removals have occurred on such large rivers, which play an outsize role in coastal ecosystems. But the lessons are the same everywhere: Unplug the rivers, and the fish will return…

Read Full Article, The New York Times (10-24-2016)

When Dams Come Down, Salmon and Sand Can Prosper; The New York Times (10-20-2015)

“River Reborn: Elwha Flows Wild and Free Once Again,” NBC News
A construction crew on Tuesday detonated a large charge of dynamite, destroying the last remaining portion of Glines Canyon Dam and hastening the restoration of the Elwha River in the far reaches of the Pacific Northwest.

1000 Dams Down and Counting: Dam Removal Study Reveals River Resiliency, USGS (05-02-2015)
More than 1,000 dams have been removed across the United States because of safety concerns, sediment buildup, inefficiency or having otherwise outlived usefulness. A paper published in Science Magazine finds that rivers are resilient and respond relatively quickly after a dam is removed…

Elwha, The Grand Experiment (11-12-2012)

Movement to Take Down Thousands of Dams Goes Mainstream, National Geographic (01-29-2015)

DamNation; a Documentary That’s Testing the Waters of Corporate Social Responsibility; Produced by Stoecker Ecological and Felt Soul Media” and presented by Patagonia.

Sediment Trapped Behind Dams Makes Them ‘Hot Spots’ for Greenhouse Gas Emissions (08-2013)

Undamming Rivers: A Chance For New Clean Energy Source; Yale E360 (08-07-2015)
Hydroelectric power is often touted as clean energy, but this claim is true only in the narrow sense of not causing air pollution. In many places, such as the U.S. East Coast, hydroelectric dams have damaged the ecological integrity of nearly every major river…

The Wrong Climate for Damming Rivers, A Video from Todd Southgate (05-26-2016)
Though large hydropower projects are often presented as a “clean and green” source of energy, nothing could be further from the truth…

12 Dams that Changed the World, Guardian UK (01-13-2015)

Dams – Cutting off our Beach Sand; By Gary Griggs (12-19-2014)

Let’s Talk About Sand: “Sand Wars” Film Director Denis Delestrac, At TEDxBarcelona

Mega Dams Remain Controversial Source of Energy

dam-hand
Belo Monte Dam.This photo is part of the AOS MONTES project. Captions and Photo source: ©© André Solnik

Excerpts;

Although mega dams can have devastating impacts on ecosystems and indigenous communities, many of the world’s poorest countries still see them as a way to fill gaping holes in their energy supplies…

Read Full Article, IPS News

The Wrong Climate for Damming Rivers, Vimeo (05-26-2016)
Though large hydropower projects are often presented as a “clean and green” source of energy, nothing could be further from the truth…

Sediment Trapped Behind Dams Makes Them ‘Hot Spots’ for Greenhouse Gas Emissions, (08-01-2013)

New Global Warming Culprit: Dams (08-08-2012)
Washington State University researchers have documented an underappreciated suite of players in global warming: dams, the water reservoirs behind them, and surges of greenhouse gases as water levels go up and down.

Large Dams Just Aren’t Worth the Cost, The New York Times (10-25-2014)

Small Dams On Chinese River Harm Environment More Than Expected, study finds, NSF (05-30-2013)

DamNation; a Documentary That’s Testing the Waters of Corporate Social Responsibility; Produced by Stoecker Ecological and Felt Soul Media” and presented by Patagonia.

Movement to Take Down Thousands of Dams Goes Mainstream, National Geographic (01-29-2015)

Dams – Cutting off our Beach Sand; By Gary Griggs (12-19-2014)

Undamming Rivers: A Chance For New Clean Energy Source, Yale E360 (08-07-2015)

Movement to Take Down Thousands of Dams Goes Mainstream, National Geographic (01-29-2015)

Elwha, The Grand Experiment (11-12-2012)

The Wrong Climate for Damming Rivers, Video

dam-emissions-petit-saut-reservoir
Dire Consequences of Dam Reservoir Emissions, Petit Saut Reservoir, French Guiana. A growing number of scientific studies indicate that reservoirs, especially in the tropics, are a significant source of global greenhouse gas pollution. The “fuel” for these emissions is the rotting of organic matter from the vegetation and soils flooded when the reservoir is first filled. The carbon in the plankton and plants that live and die in the reservoir, the detritus washed down from the watershed above, and the seasonal flooding of plants along the reservoir fringes, ensure that emissions continue for the lifetime of the reservoir. Captions and Photo source: ©© Frédéric Guérin / International Rivers

Excerpts;

Though large hydropower projects are often presented as a “clean and green” source of energy, nothing could be further from the truth…

WATCH on Vimeo: The Wrong Climate for Damming Rivers, from Todd Southgate

Learn More On Vimeo

Sediment Trapped Behind Dams Makes Them ‘Hot Spots’ for Greenhouse Gas Emissions, (08-01-2013)

New Global Warming Culprit: Dams (08-08-2012)
Washington State University researchers have documented an underappreciated suite of players in global warming: dams, the water reservoirs behind them, and surges of greenhouse gases as water levels go up and down.

Large Dams Just Aren’t Worth the Cost, The New York Times (10-25-2014)

Small Dams On Chinese River Harm Environment More Than Expected, study finds, NSF (05-30-2013)

DamNation; a Documentary That’s Testing the Waters of Corporate Social Responsibility; Produced by Stoecker Ecological and Felt Soul Media” and presented by Patagonia.

Movement to Take Down Thousands of Dams Goes Mainstream, National Geographic (01-29-2015)

Dams – Cutting off our Beach Sand; By Gary Griggs (12-19-2014)

China May Shelve Plans to Build Dams on Its Last Wild River

nu-river-china
The Nu/Salween River is one of the region’s last largely free-flowing rivers and is shared by China, Thailand, and Burma. The river originates on the Tibetan Plateau and flows through China’s Three Parallel Rivers World Heritage Site, before becoming the Salween in Burma and Thailand and emptying into the Andaman Sea. Captions and Photo source: ©© International Rivers

Excerpts;

Springing from Tibetan glaciers and flowing through China, Myanmar and Thailand, before spilling into the Andaman Sea, the Nu River- the last free-flowing river in China- could become a national park, as officials appear to back away from a proposal for multiple dams…

Read Full Article, National Geographic

China’s Great Dam Boom: A Major Assault; Yale E360 (12-08-2013)
China is engaged in a push to build hydroelectric dams on a scale unprecedented in human history. While being touted for producing lower-emission electricity, these massive dam projects are wreaking havoc on river systems across China and Southeast Asia…

Small Dams On Chinese River Harm Environment More Than Expected, study finds, NSF (05-30-2013)

Himalayas to Become The Most Dammed Region In The World, IPS News

Coastal Erosion Induced by Human Activities: A Northwest Bohai Sea Case Study, Journal of Coastal Research
Using mooring hydrodynamic observation, cross-shore profiles, and topographic-map and satellite-image comparisons, this study shows dramatic coastal erosion on the Qinhuangdao coast (northeast Bohai Sea, China). Sediment starvation induced by dams mainly caused this fast coastal retreat.

Dams – Cutting off our Beach Sand; By Gary Griggs (12-19-2014)

Large Dams Just Aren’t Worth the Cost, The New York Times (10-25-2014)

Sediment Trapped Behind Dams Makes Them ‘Hot Spots’ for Greenhouse Gas Emissions, (08-01-2013)

DamNation; a Documentary That’s Testing the Waters of Corporate Social Responsibility; Produced by Stoecker Ecological and Felt Soul Media” and presented by Patagonia.

Movement to Take Down Thousands of Dams Goes Mainstream, National Geographic (01-29-2015)