Monday, April 15, 2013

Learning about dams on the Madeira

I confess that I am not very well informed about the construction of dams along the Madeira River, so I thought that it would be good to bring together some sources that relate to these issue. Here is an open access article from PLOS one that collates information about many dams in what the authors call Andean Amazonia, in order to assess the biological and ecological changes that will be brought about by dam construction at these two sites. The Santo Antonio and Jirau dams on the Madeira, just down stream of the Bolivian border in Brazil, were dubbed "critic proof" by the Wall Street Journal (sorry, that article is behind a paywall), but I have not read in journalism or academic literature about these their impacts. Survival International also has more information about the effects of dam construction on local indigenous people. Since the Madeira drains all of the Llanos de Mojos, these constructions presumably could change all of the seasonal patterns of drainage and flooding.

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