Home | News    Sunday 25 July 2010

European Bank halts financing Ethiopia’s controversial power project

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July 24, 2010 (ADDIS ABABA) — As protests from various green campaigners grew to stop the Gibe III hydroelectric dam project in Ethiopia, the European Investment Bank (EIB) said it has dropped the funding environmental and social impact studies for the project.

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Gibe III dam site (International Rivers)

However, the European Bank said - it stopped funding the studies due to the alternative financing and not because of the “results of these preliminary studies”.

A number of international environmental groups, among others, International Rivers, Survival International, the Counter Balance Coalition, and the Friends of Lake Turkana, have been calling upon the European Investment Bank; the World Bank, and the African Development Bank to refrain granting funds for the completion of the project.

The power project is being constructed along the country’s Omo River, which is one of the major tributaries supplying some 80pc of the water to Lake Turkana of Kenya.

The groups have claimed that the construction of the Gibe III dam in Southern Ethiopia has adverse environmental impact and seriously affects the lives of communities that depend on Lake Turkana for existence and they insist an immediate stop to the project.

Ethiopia however has dismissed claims saying that Gibe dam construction will decrease the water flow to Lake Turkana; instead it argues that it may even increase the water level due to less water evaporation effect and won’t have an effect on the nature of the local eco-system.

The Gibe III dam, now 35% completed, is costing about $1.7 billion and is expected to generate 1,800 megawatts upon completion in 2013.

The Gibe III dam is one, among the many Hydro power projects the country is building to alleviate power shortages caused from the country’s rapid economic growth.

As a secondary benefit, Ethiopia plans to export excess power to neighbouring countries, including Kenya, Sudan and Djibouti. It will also consider a 26-kilometre undersea transmission line for exporting electricity to Yemen via Djibouti.

According to Ethiopian Electric and Power Corporation (EEPCo), the horn nation will begin selling power to Sudan in September. Supplies to Sudan will amount about 200 megawatts, while 150 megawatts may also be sold to Djibouti should there be sufficient supplies.

(ST)

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  • 25 July 2010 13:21, by Paul Ongee

    Why would EU Bank realize the environmental impact now after the completion of 35% ? What kind of sense does it make? Something is really wrong somewhere. Feasibility studies should always include consideration of short or long term environmental impact.

    repondre message

    • 27 July 2010 19:30, by Wolleyewu

      Who are you the above individual putting criticism against the fair resolution of EU about Gillgel Gibe 111 dam construction? You must be one of the agents from the Ethiopian ethinocentric and barabaric government.

      Constructing dams and roads and other infrastuctures are not the interest of the brutal gangs in the circle of Ethiopian government. Rather such kind of ambitious proposals are good sources of foreign currency for the corrupted government in ETHIOPIA.

      Ethiopians always never ever has trust in this governemnt which strongly threatens the soverenighty of the counntry through different means. such as giving Ethiopian teritory to sudan, somalia, Eriteria and others.

      So we true Ethiopians applaud the decision of EU knowing the insane minds of the corrupted officals in Ethjiopia.

      Death for Tigray officials in Ethiopia

      repondre message

      • 15 August 2010 14:18, by zenu

        you dont now anything about ethiopia and gilgel gibe iii and its impact yuo are simply enemiy and jelous of ethiopia, this dam will be finilized we weill do it you will see it not anly gibhe Omo but also other rivers it is a mater of time. Do you remember tha some five or six yers ago some600 oastorialis dide in lower omo river basin flood no you don’t they dide to tell us to bulid a dam the prime minister promised it will never hapen now the time has coneing gibe3 is so fast to be come engin foe ethiopian econmiy you jus keep jolousing i’ll tell you my friend for us it is atime to use our resoures for get the EU bank Foreget the world bank we have true economic parteners the world jaint economy China you will see it in your bined eyes the lights of gibe III,IV,V.....till the end of ethiopian border

        repondre message

      • 15 August 2010 14:23, by zenu

        you dont now anything about ethiopia and gilgel gibe iii and its impact yuo are simply enemiy and jelous of ethiopia, this dam will be finilized we weill do it you will see it not anly gibhe Omo but also other rivers it is a mater of time. Do you remember? some five or six yers ago some600 pastorialis dide in lower omo river basin flood no you don’t they dide to tell us to bulid a dam the prime minister promised it will never hapen now the time has coneing gibe3 is so fast to be come engin foe ethiopian econmiy you jus keep jolousing i’ll tell you my friend for us it is atime to use our resoures for get the EU bank Foreget the world bank we have true economic parteners the world jaint economy China you will see it in your bined eyes the lights of gibe III,IV,V.....till the end of ethiopian border

        repondre message

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