In the U.S., some 2,000 high hazard dams are in need of repairs. A project from the Columbia Water Center is helping to identify the most hazardous ones.
Dams Archives - State of the Planet
Columbia Water Center director Upmanu Lall suggests that we see the Oroville crisis as a call to action to evaluate and address the challenges facing the nation’s dam infrastructure.
Across the nation, large-scale water infrastructure such as dams have provided a multitude of services, from electric power and water reservoirs to flood control and containment of pollution. But federal investments in large water infrastructure projects have largely been curtailed over the past few decades.
The SEDAC Hazards Mapper is designed for disaster risk managers, humanitarian response organizations, public health professionals, journalists and others needing a quick assessment of the potential dangers posed by a major hazardous event or developing emergency.
Many resettlers are economically better off, but the dislocations remain significant, especially for older resettlers, who have a harder time getting work in the newly developed industrial sector. Although the plight of some resettlers has been quite difficult (one older man competed fiercely to serve as a porter for us for the royal sum of $6), and there are stories of suicide in some resettler communities, it is hard to separate the problems they face from the larger dislocations that are so prevalent in 21st century China.
In the still hours just before midnight on March 12, 1928, thousands of people slumbered in the handful of agricultural communities nestled along the Santa Clara River in Ventura County, California. Tony Harnischfeger and his family slept quietly in a small house at the foot of the St. Francis Dam, a 195-foot high concrete gravity… read more
On Sept. 17, 2011, the removal of two large hydroelectric dams on the Elwha River in Washington State, which have blocked migrating salmon from reaching their spawning grounds for almost 100 years, will begin. While this is the largest dam removal project in U.S. history, it is just one of several major dam removals planned for this year that exemplify the growing river restoration movement.
China already has half the world’s large hydroelectric dams (25,800), but along the Yangtze River and its tributaries, 100 large dams are either being planned or built and 43 additional dams are in the works.
Water resources management in the Central Asia region faces formidable challenges. The hydrological regimes of the two major rivers in the region, the Syr Darya and the Amu Darya, are complex and vulnerable to climate change. Water diversions to agricultural, industrial and domestic users have reduced flows in downstream regions, resulting in severe ecological damages…. read more