What are the consequences of large dams?

What are the ramifications of huge dams? List six big dam consequences, including three social and three environmental. You may use any required reading from the course. Provide supporting details and an explanation for each influence you describe, as well as a citation (Author, year: p.#). Utilize at least four different sources. 30 points are awarded.

Large dams have a wide range of repercussions, including direct, biological, chemical, and physical issues that may have an impact on the ecosystem.

The dam walls itself can prevent fish from migrating. In some circumstances, this might distinguish different species by dividing spawning sites from rear habitats (Diehl 1991, p.11). The large dams can trap sediments that might be critical towards the physical maintaining processes and habitats towards the downstream of the dam. This might include the coastal wetlands, the barrier islands and fertile deltas (Delli 1997, p.3).

3.It results in the transformation of the upstream of a dam from free-flow of the ecosystem of the river eco-system towards an artificial slack water reservoir and habitat (Huber and Amelie 2016, p.13).

4. It can result in the changes in dissolved oxygen, chemical composition, and temperature. This may lead to the death of water species like the death of fish and other animals that live in water (Diehl 1991, p.34).

5. Large dams have wiped out various animal and plant species throughout the world. This has resulted in a lack of relevant animal species and breeding of fish in dams (Caspary and Philipp 2016, p.5).

6. They have flooded most of the vast areas of farmlands, wetlands, and forests resulting in the displacement of millions of individuals (Diehl 1991, p.25).

Works Cited

Caspary, G. Philipp. "Consequences of the fragmentation of global environmental governance: the case of safeguards in the financing of large dams." International Journal of Environmental Studies 73.6 (2016): 954-964.

Delli Priscoli, Jerome, "Water and civilization: reframing the debate on water and conflict," a paper delivered at the Ninth World Water Congress, Montreal, Canada, September 1-6 1997.

Diehl, Paul F, "Geography and war: a review and assessment of the empirical literature," International Interactions vol.17, no. 1, 1991, pp.11-27.

Huber, Amelie, et al. "Beyond “Socially Constructed” Disasters: Re-politicizing the Debate on Large Dams through a Political Ecology of Risk." Capitalism Nature Socialism (2016): 1-21.

2. How is climate change expected to impact water resources, and the environment more broadly, in the Western United States? List six predicted results, including corroborating details and citations of assigned readings. Use at least three sources from the assigned readings. Be specific - “it’s going to get hotter” is not sufficient. 30 points.

1. Climate change affects the water resources by raising the temperature. There is an expectation of some significant impact towards the fresh water supplies through the potential devastating influence on various resources (Ahmad 62) .

2. Climate change can result in an increase in temperatures which can lead to drought in the Western United States.

3. Climate Change also enhances the rate of evaporation which can cause water sources to dry up and this will lead to the scarcity of water hence drought.

4. Climate change is likely to impact the environment by raising the temperature through the melting glacial ice at an extraordinary rate (Ahmad 90). Glaciers appear to be a significant source of freshwater in the entire world.

5. Climate change can also result to a warmer environment. This causes more precipitation to occur as rain instead of snow. More rain than snow may lead to water shortages in future.

6. As rain flows faster on the ground, higher levels of soil moisture and the groundwater are expected to recharge. As a result of an alteration in climate, the areas that depend on snowmelt will experience some water shortages and low supply of water.

Essay questions:

For each of the following questions, I would expect your answers to be in the neighborhood of 250-350 words.

One of the authors we have read this semester describes water as an “uncooperative commodity” – hopefully, you have correctly matched this concept with its author above. What does this mean? You are encouraged to quote the author, but use direct quotes sparingly and be sure to explain their meaning and significance. (hint: we read two articles by the same author that both discuss this concept.) 20 points

Karen Bakker suggests that water is an “Uncooperative Commodity” because the commodification of water is quite fraught through the difficulty of the high level of its involvement state through the neoliberal forms of water management. Karen Baker talks about water as an “Uncooperative Commodity” in response to the growing private sectors that are involved in the water supply management process in the world. She also talks about the anti-privatisation of campaigns for the human rights towards the water that has emerged. Most of the alter-globalization activists appear to promote some alternative water governance models by examining various concepts that base on the neo-liberalizing nature as compared to the privatization of the human right (Bakker 43). The “neoliberalism nature” of water is mostly concerned with the creation of property rights for the shared resources. One can undertake this through various processes like private partnership sector, devolution and commercialization. It is necessary to distinguish between the neoliberal procedures that are essential towards the marketing reforms.

Karen Bakker suggests that the implementation of “Right to water” is quite problematic as a result of lack of some precise tasks and capacity for the employment of conflict over the transboundary water. An adoption of human rights by the human rights is likely to discourse the private organizations through the indication of limited anti-individual strategy. Human rights are sometimes state-centric and compatible with the political and capitalist economic system and through the particular sector for the provision of water. Instead of casting as “human right” water can be defined as being a “common” therefore contrasting with water being a “commodity.” In this case, a commodity is a resource that has property rights attachment.

According to Yofee and Wolf (1999) and Zeitoun (2008), does conflict over water resources tend to result in war? Why, or why not? 20 points.

Water resources tend to result in war just as Yofee and Wolf (1999) and Zeitoun (2008) suggest. Conflict refers to the disagreement that occurs in an appropriate course of action that should be taken during a specific duration. Conflict of water resources takes place in areas between states, regions, communities and nations. In areas where there is severe water, conflict can correlate with the scarcity of water, and therefore the regions that experience great conflict and potential for conflict are the Middle East and the Indian subcontinents. Water tends to be a fugitive resource throughout the hydrologic cycle because it never pays attention to the conflicts and the political boundaries that result in various political units. These forms of conflict can be termed as the transboundary water problems. Conflict can also occur between different groups in a society like business interests and the environmental teams. It can also occur between groups located in the downstream and upstream.

Some of the conflicts also occur in various freshwater drainage basins within the planet. Most of the single water policies have been created to prove that there is the reduction of prospects and role of international and water treaties that share water regimes. The unilateral diversion of water that flows can instigate a war between the riparian states as a result of the increased demand for freshwater in future. The single water diversion practice can form inequitable situation of water distribution among the national states that are within the basin that is a prerequisite for most of the sustainable conflict. It is, therefore, the work of the state to set up policies that aim at eliminating situations that result in inequitable increase and distribution of clean drinking water for the people living near the river basin. The people have a responsibility of securing the long-lasting stability and peace to avoid water conflict.

Baird and Quastel (2015:8) describe how air conditioning in Bangkok contributes “through action at a distance to changes in the XBF River.” Explain this connection. How does use of air conditioning in the city affect the ecology of this far-away river? 20 points

The demand for Electricity in Bangkok air conditioning appears to exceed the total number of output of NT2. This occurs as a result of the contribution of actions at a distance through the change of XBF river. The use of electricity in Bangkok is therefore exceedingly valuable as a consequence of the variations in the day to day temperature and the routinized closing and opening of businesses and offices during the week and day (Van and Michelle 90). Apart from these, there are different causes of the demand for electricity in the Thai power system. The Bangkok air conditioning is responsible for making up of a significant node in the network and one can link it as a contributing factor through the distance to the changes of the XBF river.

Air conditioning, on the other hand, uses varies in various parts as a result of the external weather. The mean temperature in Thailand being 31c, this leads to a wider range of annual temperatures from 22c to about 39 c which varies depending on the peak demand system. The load patterns are likely to shift depending on the day to day changes in temperature. This therefore indicates that there is a great role of air conditioning in Bangkok through the vast Mekong system. Air conditioning is also responsible for about 60 degrees of the consumed electricity in various commercial sectors. These allow the formation of small general services throughout the country.

Reflection/Feedback question

What do you think you will remember about this class a year from now? (5 pts for any sincere attempt).

This class appears to be relevant in my geographical word especially when I reflect on Garret Hardin (2008) argument of the use of universal and inevitable resources that later result in the destruction of resources (Wong, Garrett et al 43) . A year from now I will still remember some of the new insights regarding the problems and conditions that favor the sustainability of the use of shared resources. I will also remember the difficulties relating to the concern of the management of large scale possessions that depend on the international organization, for instance, the freshwater basins and the large marine ecosystems. I will also remember about the global diversity that is necessary for the biological diversity for the long-term survival of people.

Works Cited

Ahmad, N. 2011. Working with stakeholders. In Doing a dam better: The Lao People’s Democratic Republic and the story of Nam Theun 2, ed. I. C. Porter and J. Shivakumar, 99–116. Washington, DC: World Bank.

Bakker, Karen. "The “Commons” versus the “Commodity”: Alter‐globalization, Anti‐privatization and the Human Right to Water in the Global South (2007)." The Globalization and Environment Reader (2016): 187.

Van Vliet, Michelle TH, et al. "Power-generation system vulnerability and adaptation to changes in climate and water resources." Nature Climate Change (2016).

Wong, Garrett T., et al. "The genome-wide transcriptional response to varying RpoS levels in Escherichia coli K-12." bioRxiv (2017): 082537.

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