Indigenous Munduruku Oppose Mega Hydro Amazon Plan.
The Tapajós Basin is a jewel of the Amazon, home to an incredible array of plant and animal biodiversity. A mosaic of protected areas and indigenous lands, the basin is home to approximately 820,000 people, including 10 indigenous groups. The Tapajós and its major tributaries – the Teles Pires, Jamanxim and Juruena rivers – are threatened by an unprecedented series of massive dams and associated industrial waterways (hidrovias) that would flood national parks, indigenous lands and other protected areas, accelerating the destruction of the Amazon Basin. No serious analysis of the individual and combined impacts of this cascade of dams has been carried out, especially with regard to environmental flows, biodiversity and livelihoods of indigenous peoples. All of these dams would be part of a larger complex of water infrastructure projects in the region, including industrial waterways for transporting agribusiness and mining commodities out of the Amazon rainforest. Much of the electricity from these dams would be used for the expansion of electro-intensive aluminium and iron ore smelters in the region. These dams together would flood 930 square kilometres of conservation units and national parks. A growing movement of riverbank dwellers and indigenous communities is mobilising to protest and mount legal challenges and protests against the planned dams and industrial waterways in the Tapajos basin, with support from partners that include public prosecutors, Movimento dos Atingidos por Barragens, the progressive Catholic Church, environmental NGOs and International Rivers. We are working to support the movement and propose better options for meeting Brazil’s energy needs. Credit: International Rivers.
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