ETH: Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam(GERD)


THE GERD formerly
known as the Millennium Dam
and sometimes referred to as
Hidase Dam, is a gravity dam on
the Blue Nile River in Ethiopia
currently under construction. It
is in the Benishangul-Gumuz
Region of Ethiopia, about
40 km (25 mi) east of the
border with Sudan. At 6,000
MW, the dam will be the largest
hydroelectric power plant in
Africa when completed, as well
as the 8th largest in the world
sharing the spot with
Krasnoyarskaya. The
reservoir at 63 billion cubic
meters will be one of the
continent’s largest. According to the Ethiopian
government, as of February
2014, the dam is 30%
complete.The potential impacts of the
dam have been the source of
severe regional controversy.
The Government of Egypt, a
country which relies heavily on
the waters of the Nile, has
demanded that Ethiopia cease
construction on the dam as a
preconditions to negotiations,
sought regional support for its
position, and some political
leaders have discussed
methods to sabotage it.

Egypt has planned a diplomatic
initiative to undermine support
for the dam in the region as
well as in other countries
supporting the project such as
China, Italy, and Norway.However, other nations in the
Nile Basin Initiative have
expressed support for the dam
including Sudan,the only other
nation downstream of the Blue
Nile, which has accused Egypt
of inflaming the situation.Ethiopia denies that the dam
will have a negative impact on
downstream water flows and
contends that the dam will in
fact increase water flows to
Egypt by reducing evaporation
on Lake Nasser. It has
accused Egypt of being
unreasonable; Egypt is
demanding to increase its
share of the Nile’s water flow
from 66% to 90%.

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