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Dams

30 Things You Didn't Know About Rivers

Peter Bosshard | Posted 07.16.2015 | Green
Peter Bosshard

Rivers are some of the most diverse ecosystems on the planet. Rivers and lakes sustain more fish species than the sea even though they contain 600 times less water.

Will the World Take Action to Stop the Destruction of a Unique Global Heritage?

Peter Bosshard | Posted 06.30.2015 | Green
Peter Bosshard

The member states of the World Heritage Committee have so far declined to declare Lake Turkana a World Heritage in Danger. They have instead asked the Ethiopian government to avert the destruction of Lake Turkana by carrying out a strategic environmental assessment of the projects in the Omo Valley. Yet so far, the Ethiopian government has thumbed its nose at the UN body.

Wind and Solar Power Are Taking the Lead

Peter Bosshard | Posted 06.22.2015 | Green
Peter Bosshard

Dam builders like to claim that hydropower is the world's largest source of renewable electricity. But new figures from the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) show that the picture is quickly changing.

How the Inga Dams Are Holding the Congo's Energy Future Hostage

Peter Bosshard | Posted 06.10.2015 | Green
Peter Bosshard

It is time for the World Bank and the DRC government to embrace more feasible solutions and stop holding the Congolese population hostage to their multi-billion dollar dreams.

How Business Leaders Can Help Save the Planet -- and Lead a Joyous Life

Mark Tercek | Posted 06.02.2015 | Green
Mark Tercek

Your businesses have clout. I encourage you to be bolder -- use your clout to push decision-makers and build coalitions that result in win-win strategies that strengthen both business and environmental outcomes.

The Power of Rivers -- in Whose Hands?

Peter Bosshard | Posted 05.27.2015 | Green
Peter Bosshard

Sustainable water and energy development requires public participation in decision making just as much as money and technical expertise. The Nature Conservancy makes a strong case that smart planning needs to address the systems level rather than just individual dams. It now needs to expand its approach and give the rights of affected communities the place they deserve.

Goldman Prize Winners 2015: When Art Empowers Society, and So Much More!

Mary Ellen Harte | Posted 06.21.2015 | Green
Mary Ellen Harte

Once again, Goldman Prize awardees embody how single, determined individuals across the world can mobilize enough groundswell to conquer industrial Goliaths. Hailing from diverse backgrounds, these 2015 superheroes form a fountain of inspiration for all of us, and their weblinks show how we can act.

Dammed, Displaced and Forgotten

Peter Bosshard | Posted 05.27.2015 | Green
Peter Bosshard

It is difficult to avoid the conclusion that for the World Bank and other financiers, poor people who stand in the way of their projects literally don't count. Time and again, the World Bank has demonstrated that it is not able to resettle people fairly. It should stop displacing people involuntarily in its projects.

Rainwater Harvesting Pioneer Wins International Water Prize

Peter Bosshard | Posted 05.20.2015 | Green
Peter Bosshard

By empowering poor farmers, reviving traditional knowledge and building small rainwater ponds, Indian activist Rajendra Singh has brought five rivers and a thousand villages back to life over the past 30 years. On August 26, Sweden's King Carl Gustav will present the highly reputed Stockholm Water Prize to the rainwater pioneer.

Why We Celebrate Rivers

Peter Bosshard | Posted 05.14.2015 | Green
Peter Bosshard

Please take a moment to think about what you can do to protect the arteries of our planet. We can all avoid products that waste and pollute valuable water. We can educate our children about a way of life that respects the ecosystems of our planet.

12 Dams That Changed the World

Peter Bosshard | Posted 03.14.2015 | Green
Peter Bosshard

The Hoover Dam was the world's highest and most powerful dam when it was completed in 1936. It spurred the agricultural and industrial development of the US Southwest, and destroyed the Colorado River's rich downstream fisheries.

Greed and Resistance in Sarawak's Rainforest

Peter Bosshard | Posted 02.17.2015 | Green
Peter Bosshard

The greed and corruption of a small clique are now turning Sarawak's rainforests into a monoculture of oil palms and hydropower reservoirs. Lukas Straumann documents the local politics, international complicity and desperate resistance in the struggle over one of the world's last paradises.

US Congress Sets Strict Limits on Global Dam Funding

Peter Bosshard | Posted 02.09.2015 | Green
Peter Bosshard

The Congressional criteria reflect the lessons of past experience with large dams. If taken seriously, they will stop the worst project from going forward, and can improve the projects that still get built.

The Hidden Hand Behind 'Natural' Disasters

Peter Bosshard | Posted 02.07.2015 | Green
Peter Bosshard

Floods and droughts in many parts of the world are getting ever more frequent and intense. Scientists have long warned that a changing climate is making such weather events more extreme. What is often neglected in the public debate is that the impacts of climate change on flood and drought disasters are exacerbated by environmental destruction.

The Last Undammed River in the Sierra Madre Occidental Is Under Threat

Jaime Rojo L. | Posted 02.03.2015 | Green
Jaime Rojo L.

Despite obvious public opposition and scientific and legal recommendations, Mexico's Secretary of the Environment and Natural Resources approved the construction of the Las Cruces dam in mid-September of this year.

A Health Check-up for Our Environment -- Ignored at Our Own Risk

Peter Bosshard | Posted 01.11.2015 | Green
Peter Bosshard

The Chinese river dolphin has disappeared before our eyes within only two generations. Will we change course before other branches on the tree of life die off? It would be foolish to assume that we can somehow maintain our prosperity and our very future without the rich biodiversity on Planet Earth.

What Does California's Proposition 1 Really Say?

Peter H. Gleick | Posted 12.23.2014 | Green
Peter H. Gleick

Voters should not expect immediate relief from Proposition 1 for the impacts of the current drought; nor should they expect these funds to be the last investment that is needed for better institutions, smarter planning, and more effective water management strategies. It can be, at best, a down payment on our water future.

Coalition of the Willing: Cleaning up a Dam[n] Mess

Belinda Waymouth | Posted 12.18.2014 | Green
Belinda Waymouth

Scientists believe steelhead are more likely to survive climate change without the dam. Creek water temperatures will increase along with air temperature, possibly exceeding the steelhead's tolerance range.

No Need to Sacrifice the Planet's Arteries to Save Her Lungs

Peter Bosshard | Posted 11.22.2014 | Green
Peter Bosshard

The People's Climate March will hopefully set some official pants on fire and speed up the capitalization of the new fund. At the same time, we need to be vigilant that the powers that be don't abuse the GCF as honey pots from which they can fund business-as-usual or outright destructive projects.

Government Audit Finds Hydropower Aid Doesn't Benefit the Poor

Peter Bosshard | Posted 09.07.2014 | Green
Peter Bosshard

Norway is a leading voice in the global dams debate and is often considered a model in development and energy finance. A new audit adds to the growing evidence that large hydropower projects are not effective at reducing poverty, and that better tools for achieving this goal exist.

10 Things You Should Know About Dams

Peter Bosshard | Posted 07.27.2014 | Green
Peter Bosshard

Dams are not climate-neutral. Particularly in the tropics, organic matter rotting in their reservoirs emits methane, an aggressive greenhouse gas.

Life-Giving Deltas Starved by Dams

Peter Bosshard | Posted 07.23.2014 | Green
Peter Bosshard

Our deltas are literally sinking, shrinking and in grave a peril, and some may not survive in the coming years. This will impact millions of people, major food producing regions as well as valuable ecosystems.

Feds Say Hydropower Capacity Could Be Doubled In U.S.

Posted 05.04.2014 | Green

This story originally appeared on Climate Central. The Grand Canyon was once targeted as a major dam site by the federal government, a project even...

Tax a Cola, Save the Planet

Jeff Ritterman, MD | Posted 05.26.2014 | Green
Jeff Ritterman, MD

A simple policy change like the Soda Tax can help us waste less water, lower our GHG production, and lessen the pollution of our air, water and soil. It's a win-win-win: a win for the environment, a win for our children, and a win for our communities.

China Rivers at the Brink of Collapse

Peter Bosshard | Posted 05.26.2014 | Green
Peter Bosshard

Land conflicts have become the primary cause of social unrest in China. As dam building moves upstream into mountain areas, ethnic minorities are particularly affected by displacement.