Tag Archives: Giant Dam

Giant Dam violates Brazilian Rainforest

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The construction of a giant dam in the Amazon region of Brazil is threatening parts of the world’s largest rainforest. But the indigenous tribes living here are keeping quiet in return for millions of dollars in promises.

The dam is Brazil’s most controversial project. Everyone in the country has an opinion about Belo Monte, especially after it was criticized by a few actors in the serial TV dramas known as telenovelas that are so popular among Brazilians.

Giant Dam

This picture was taken by Greenpeace

On the surface, it appears to be a relatively straightforward situation. On the one side of the controversy are the Norte Energia construction consortium, corrupt government officials and the Energy Ministry, and on the other side are the indigenous people, the rainforest and hundreds of thousands of turtles. It’s an age-old conflict, pitting good against evil, like the one depicted in director James Cameron’s film “Avatar,” in which native people shoot arrows at the bulldozers of big corporations.

Altamira’s population is expected to reach 300,000 soon, up from only 100,000 not too long ago. The developers call the dam Belo Monte, or “beautiful mountain,” while the dam’s opponents call it Belo Monte de Merde, or “beautiful mountain of shit.” The dam attracts workers, causing the city and its garbage dumps to grow, which in turn attracts black vultures from the jungle.

It will become the biggest construction site in the largest rainforest on earth. The first of 24 turbines is expected to be up and running in 2015. Starting in 2019, the dam will have as much generating capacity as 11 nuclear power plants. To achieve this, 18,000 workers are moving as much earth as was moved to build the Panama Canal. They are creating a reservoir larger than Lake Constance to build the world’s third-largest dam, which is also expected to become a symbol of Brazil’s motto “Ordem e Progresso,” or “Order and Progress.”

It sucks!

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