A little good news for a change

It is not always possible to report good environmental news; little of it exists. Environmentalists of needs must be moaners and doom and gloom merchants trying tp prevent people from dealing in the destruction of what we all need to enjoy life.

However some excellent news came through about the building of a dam on the Xingu River, part of the Brazilian Amazon basin, at Belo Monte. The dam is being built as part of a multibillion dollar project to bring more hydro electricity to Brazil, and at 11,000 Mw, the project would be the world’s third largest hydro electric power station. Although “robust” environmental impact reports have been prepared, which the authorities say show the environmental impact to be acceptable, the project involves flooding land, massive construction of dams canals and dykes and other infrastructure work which will inevitably but the very nature of the work, harm the environment and affect local people who will find their subsistence at threat because of the project.

The local indigenous population took the matter up in the Brazilian courts and Judge Carlos Castro Martins has forbidden any work which interferes with the natural flow of the Xingu, thus protecting fishermen who depend upon fish from the Xingu.

It is a small ray of hope in a large project which will end up displacing more than 10,000 indigenous people in the very heart of the world’s largest tropical rain forest.


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