Ohio governor committed to rebuild the Buckeye Lake dam to adress the significant flooding risks associated with the aging embankment, which has been showing signs of decay during the past decades. The dam replacement will require lowering of the lake water level and is estimated to take five years to complete.
Construction on the massive Inga 3 dam, which is expected to produce 4,800 megawatts of power for the Democratic Republic of Congo, won’t begin until 2017 at the earliest. This is according to a Thursday statement by the World Bank and signals a fresh delay in the project.
“Work should get underway in 2017,” said the World Bank’s DR Congo manager Ahmadou Moustapha Ndiaye. “there are still a lot of technical questions to be resolved,”
With engineers calling it "the most daring project under way in Brazil", the Belo Monte Dam in Amazonia, will have a year operating capacity of 4,500 megawatts, which was rediced to a third of its initial installed capacity of 11,233 MW, as a result of environmental restrictions that led to the reduction of the reservoir's size. The $8.74 billion project is expected to be soon complete so that the dam operated in 2016.
According to environmental activists, the Chinese Ministry of Environmental Protection has issued an order that will stop the building of a hydroelectric dam near the western city of Chongqing on the upper Yangtze River. The proposed dam, Xiaonanhai Dam, would have been Chongqing’s largest infrastructure project and was expected to cost billions of dollars to build and operate. The project was fiercely opposed by environmentalists for years while supported by the politician Bo Xilai, who was given prison time for corruption charges in 2013.
A study performed by the U.S. Geological survey and published in Science reveals that rivers respond quickly to dam removal. In the past forty years, more than 1000 dams have been removed from US rivers due to safety concerns, sediment buildup, and inefficiency. According to Jim O’Connor, a geologist with the U.S.G.S. and lead author of the study, “rivers quickly erode sediment accumulated in former reservoirs and redistribute it downstream, commonly returning the river to conditions similar to those prior to impoundment." Because of this, more and more dams are coming down as a means of river restoration.
Five peer-reviewed papers written by government, tribal and university researchers, scientifically establish the effects of the Elwha River dam removal. The Elwha Project is the largest dam removal project in U.S. history and the new scientific findings highlight the landscape changes along the coast and river areas as well as their ecological impact.
Grady Hillhouse, a civil engineer specialized in dams and large hydraulic structures, prepared a display for an elementary school Career Day to explain the basic principles of dam function! Watch the video below demonstrating the different construction stages!
As of April 24th, Costa Rica has generated all of its electricity this year using only renewable resources. In a report released last week, the Costa Rican Electricity Institute believes the energy streak is likely to continue, estimating that Costa Rica will end 2015 having obtained 97% percent of its energy from renewables.