Dams

Drought Plagues Brazil’s Richest Metropolis

Agricultural losses are no longer the most visible effect of the drought plaguing Brazil’s most developed region. Now the energy crisis and the threat of water shortages in the city of São Paulo are painful reminders of just how dependent Brazilians are on regular rainfall.

A Flood of Energy Projects Clash with Mexican Communities

Since January, villagers and townspeople near the Los Pescados river in southeast Mexico have been blocking the construction of a dam, part of a multi-purpose project to supply potable water to Xalapa, the capital of the state of Veracruz.

Large Dams “Highly Correlated” with Poor Water Quality

Large-scale dams are likely having a detrimental impact on water quality and biodiversity around the world, according to a new study that tracks and correlates data from thousands of projects.

Threat of Hydropower Dams Still Looms in Chile’s Patagonia

After its victory in a nearly decade-long struggle against HidroAysén, a project that would have built five large hydroelectric dams on wilderness rivers, Chile’s Patagonia region is gearing up for a new battle: blocking a quiet attempt to build a dam on the Cuervo River.

Chile’s Patagonia Celebrates Decision Against Wilderness Dams

The Chilean government rejected Tuesday the controversial HidroAysén project for the construction of five hydroelectric dams on rivers in the south of the country. The decision came after years of struggle by environmental groups and local communities, who warned the world of the destruction the dams would wreak on the Patagonian wilderness.

Deforestation in the Andes Triggers Amazon “Tsunami”

Deforestation, especially in the Andean highlands of Bolivia and Peru, was the main driver of this year’s disastrous flooding in the Madeira river watershed in Bolivia’s Amazon rainforest and the drainage basin across the border, in Brazil.

Brazilian Dams Accused of Aggravating Floods in Bolivia

Unusually heavy rainfall, climate change, deforestation and two dams across the border in Brazil were cited by sources who spoke to IPS as the causes of the heaviest flooding in Bolivia’s Amazon region since records have been kept.

Dammed Rivers Create Hardship for Brazil’s Native Peoples

The Itaparica hydroelectric power plant occupied land belonging to the Pankararu indigenous people, but while others were compensated, they were not. They have lost land and access to the São Francisco river, charge native leaders in Paulo Afonso, a city in northeastern Brazil.

Development Follows Devastation from Brazilian Dam

Valdenor de Melo has been waiting for 27 years for the land and cash compensation he is due because his old farm was left underwater when the Itaparica hydroelectric dam was built on the São Francisco river in Brazil’s semiarid Northeast.

Caring for Water Is a Must for Brazil’s Energy Industry

As they build huge hydropower dams, the Brazilian government and companies have run into resistance from environmentalists, indigenous groups and social movements. But the binational Itaipú plant is an exception, where cooperation is the name of the game.

Mundurukú Indians in Brazil Protest Tapajós Dams

It took them three days to make the 2,000-km journey by bus from their Amazon jungle villages.

South America – From Granary to Megaprojects for the World

South America has gone from the world’s granary to the site of innumerable international infrastructure, energy and mining megaprojects. It is now facing a new dilemma: bolstering the economy with the promise of reducing inequality, in exchange for social and environmental costs that are taking their toll.

Energy Integration Runs into Short Circuits

Energy integration efforts in Latin America have been made in fits and starts, even though many clearly understand that the only way to solve the region’s energy shortages and high costs is by working together.

Q&A: Everyone Loses in War Over Amazon Dams

In the war over major hydropower dams in the Amazon jungle, everyone loses - even the winners who manage to overcome the opposition and build them, but who suffer delays, costs that are difficult to recoup, and damage to their image.

/CORRECTED REPEAT*/River Diversion Project Spells Disaster

Tsetseghkorol, a Mongolian herder, stares out nostalgically at the Orkhon River, the longest in the country.

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