Pressreleases / Communiqués / Pressemitteilungen 
(all in original language, en langue originale, in Originalsprache):


    "Newer" News

    26.01.00 : Japan city gives thumbs down to pork-barrel dam
    21.01.00 : Danube: WWF fordert mehr Wasser fuer die Donau bei Gabcikovo
    21.01.00 : Australia launches Snowy hydro water flows study
    24.01.00 : action on the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin by solidarios con Itoiz
    24.01.00 : Comments and Press release of the NGO meeting held in Bratislava on WCD (World Commission on Dams) related issues. (PR in english and french)
    13.01.00 : India Thousands Arrested Protesting Maheshwar Dam
    11.01.00 : Switzerland:  Last big dam project in the Alps cancelled !
    10.01.00 : Namibia/ Epupa:Himba steer own development plans
    09.01.00 :  CALL TO ACTION: March 14, 2000, International Day of Action Against Dams and for  Rivers, Water & Life
    04.01.2000 :  Marée noire en France: site spécial marée noire et souscription "oiseaux"

Text : 

26.01.00 : Japan city gives thumbs down to pork-barrel dam

TOKYO, Jan 24 (Reuters)
      By Elaine Lies

  - A Japanese city has given a resounding no to a
controversial dam scheme in a rare vote against a central
government-backed public works project at a time of rising criticism of
pork-barrel spending.

More than 90 percent of voters in Tokushima, a city on Japan's smallest
main island of Shikoku some 900 km (540 miles) southwest of Tokyo, on
Sunday voted down the 100 billion yen ($954 million) project, the first
referendum ever held on a public works scheme.

The vote is not legally binding and Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi told
reporters on Monday construction was likely to go ahead despite the

``This project is very important for the entire region,'' Obuchi said.
``I haven't heard anything about cancelling the project because of the
poll results.''

Observers hailed the vote as a significant step for Japan, which has
traditionally welcomed such projects as a way of pumping life into
lagging local economies.

``This shows that people in Japan are not just saying 'yes, yes' to
government projects anymore,'' said Tsunao Imamura, a professor at
Tokyo's Chuo University. ``They are evaluating each one individually, and
this time they said no.''

He said the result was especially significant in light of an unusual
ruling that mandated the vote would only be valid if more than 50 percent
of eligible voters turned out.

Close to 55 percent came to cast 102,759 votes against while 9,367 voted
in favour.


Public works projects have been the backbone both of Japanese politics
and economic policies, with lawmakers ladling out the pork to get votes
and jump-start the economy when it falters.

But these practices have come back to haunt the government, which after a
decade of such spending faces a public debt that rose to 123 percent of
gross domestic product this fiscal year -- the highest among
industrialised nations -- and will swell to 130 percent in 2000/01.

In the face of growing criticism from both opposition forces and rivals
within his own party, Obuchi refuses to cut government spending, saying
Japan's fragile economic recovery needs ``one more push'' before fiscal
reform can be tackled.


Under the scheme proposed by Japan's construction ministry, a movable
weir-highway bridge would be built on the Yoshino river to replace an
existing 250-year-old dam.

The ministry says the project is essential for control of major floods,
which it says may strike once every 150 years. Opponents say it would
destroy the ecosystem around the dam.

But what really angers Tokushima residents is a sense that the government
has not consulted them even while it uses their tax money, city official
Toshihiro Honda said.

``The national government has ignored the people of the city in putting
forth this plan. Considering they're spending so much money on this, why
won't they hear our opinions?'' he added.


The construction ministry said the vote will not affect its plans. ``We
will make further efforts to explain to local residents the necessity of
the project for their safety,'' it said in a statement.

An official at the ministry's Flood Control division said it is still far
too early to say whether the ministry might propose a compromise to
mollify residents.

Tokushima is also not the only municipality involved. Jurisdiction over
the project also rests with one other city and eight towns, all of which
are still in favour of the project.

But observers said the fact that this is an election year could make
officials more willing to lend an ear.

>`The government won't halt the project,'' said Chuo University's
Imamura. ``But they are going to have to listen to what people say and
take it more seriously than usual.''

($1 - 105 yen)

07:25 01-24-00

Copyright 2000 Reuters Limited.  All rights reserved.

21.01.00 : Donau : WWF fordert mehr Wasser fuer die Donau bei Gabcikovo

Rastatt, Wien, Budapest, 21. Januar 2000. Neue Diskussionen gibt es derzeit um einen alten Konflikt zwischen Ungarn und der Slowakei: Anlaesslich einer internationalen Tagung in Budapest betonte der World Wide Fund For Nature (WWF),dass es fuer den Streitfall um das Donau-Kraftwerk bei Gabcikovo nur eine wirklich naturvertraegliche Loesung gibt: Es muss wieder mehr Wasser in das alte Bett der Donau.
1992 nahm die Slowakei das Wasserkraftwerk Gabcikovo in Betrieb und lenkte eigenmaechtig die Donau aus dem Flussbett heraus in einen Kanal um. Ungarn erhob dagegen Einspruch, der Fall gelangte bis vor den Internationalen Gerichtshof in Den Haag. Dieser ermahnte die beiden Regierungen 1998, eine umweltvertraegliche Loesung zu finden. Es liegen mehrere Loesungsvorschlaege vor, einen davon hat der WWF erarbeitet. Diese Vorschlaege sind nun unter anderem Gegenstand einer Fachtagung zu Flussrenaturierung und Wasserstrassen, die am 21. und 22. Januar in Budapest stattfindet. Der Staudamm und der Ableitungskanal, den die Slowakei zum Betreiben des Kraftwerks baute, haben folgenschwere Auswirkungen auf die ueber 8.000 Hektar grossen  Auengebiete. 

Da ein Grossteil des Flusswassers durch den Kanal geleitet wird, sind fuer das eigentliche Flussbett nur noch etwa 20 Prozent der urspruenglichen Menge uebrig. In der Folge sinkt auch der Grundwasserspiegel, und die wertvollen Auenwaelder zeigen erste Trockenschaeden. Laut der Studie des WWF muessten wieder zwei Drittel der urspruenglichen Wassermenge durch das alte Flussbett fliessen. „Nur mit mehr Wasser kann das Leben in die Auen zurueckkehren“, sagte Prof. Emil Dister, Leiter des WWF-Auen-Instituts. Das Flussbett muesse dazu auch verengt werden. Ausserdem muesse gesichert sein, dass Hochwasser in die Auen gelange. „Die Lebensgemeinschaften in der Donau sind auf regelmaessige Ueberflutungen angewiesen“, unterstrich Dister. Im Vergleich zu den anderen diskutierten Moeglichkeiten sei diese die einzige, die alle oekologischen Faktoren beruecksichtige und damit eine Renaturierung gewaehrleiste.
Weitere Informationen erhalten Sie bei:
Anja Rech, Pressereferentin im WWF-Auen-Institut, Tel.: 0 72 22/38 07-14, Fax -99
E-Mail:, Internet:

WWF claims for more water in the old Danube river bed near Gabchikovo
New discussion over an old Slovakian power plant.

Rastatt, Wien, Budapest, January, 21. 2000. New discussion is kindled on an old conflict between Hungary and Slovakia. On the occasion of an international conference in Budapest the World Wide Fund For Nature (WWF) emphasised that there is only one real solution for the dispute: the original Danube river bed must again receive more water.
In 1992 the Republic of Slovakia on its own authority deviated the Danube into a canal. Hungary's suit had reached the International Supreme Court in Den Haag. As a result in 1998 both governments where summoned to find an ecologically acceptable solution to the dispute. Now several mitigation proposals are submitted. These different proposals have been reviewed in an conference in Budapest on 21. and 22. of January. The deviation of the water from the original river bed causes serious consequences for the 8,000 hectares of plain forests on that stretch of the Danube river. The plain forests show first draught damages.
Since only 20% of the original run off are running through the old river bed the ground water level has dropped. According to study launched by the WWF it is necessary to let 2/3rd of the run off pass through the old river bed: "Only more water can bring new live to the plain forests" so Prof. Emil Diester, chairmen of the WWF Floodplain Research Institute. Furthermore annual high water has to be lead into the old riverbed to let all functions revive. 
For more information contact:
Anja Rech, Press consultant of  WWF- Floodplain Research Institute, Tel.: 0 72 22/38 07-14, Fax -99
E-Mail:, Internet:

21.01.00 : Australia launches Snowy hydro water flows study
MELBOURNE - Reuters News Service
Snowy Mountains Hydro-Electric Authority corporatisation and the effect of 
changed water flows would be studied in an environmental impact statement, 
Federal Environment Minister Robert Hill said yesterday.

The authority and Snowy Hydro Trading Ltd are proposed to be brought 
together in the corporatised Snowy Hydro Ltd, but the controversial issue 
of water flows in the Snowy River must first be resolved.
"It will be run as a business entity and as such will be given guarantees 
for water flows over quite a long period and therefore the issue has to be 
sorted out," a spokesman for Hill told Reuters.
The impact study would be conducted by the Department of Industry, Science 
and Resources and be completed within six months.
"The process will enable full examination of the proposal to increase 
environmental flows to the Snowy with emphasis on how they might affect the 
future health of the Murray River," Hill said in a statement.
Victoria is pushing for Snowy River flows below Lake Jindabyne to be 
increased to 28 percent of original levels compared to one percent 
currently, but the plan has sparked strong opposition by irrigators
A report commissioned by the Victorian and New South Wales government and 
released in October 1998 found increasing the flow level to 28 percent 
would have a A$188 million impact on the Snowy hydro scheme.
The report recommended flows be increased to 15 percent of current levels, 
which would have a A$108 million impact.
The Snowy hydro scheme, considered something of an Australian icon, has 
eight power stations with a generating capacity of 3,800 MW and plays a 
critical role in meeting peak power demand.

24.01.00 : action on the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin by solidarios con Itoiz

Today, Mondaz 24th of January 00, the direct action group SOLIDARIOS CON 
ITOIZ (Basque Country) did an action on the worldwide famous Brandenburg 
gate in Berlin - against the itoiz reservoir project and for criticizing th
e penalty of 5 years of prison that 8 of their comrades got for another 
peaceful and public direct action.
At 11 o'clock in the morning seven activist stepped on top of a lateral 
roof of the building using a 9 m ladder. A few seconds later the first 
policemen arrived (Berlin's center is completely controlled 24 hours) and got
on the top roof of Brandenburg Gate before the activists could change the 
ladder's position in order to get there. One policemen wildly moved the 
ladder, so the activists could'nt go on further. They decided to lock their
throats to iron bars found right there by some motorbike locks - 3 
activists did so. Two others climbed down some ropes and hang there till 
the finish of the action. A massive banner showing the Itoiz dam and the 
text SOS ITOIZ were put in the front of the building by them.
Police, that soon were massively present, closed the whole area, took the 
names of some of the more than 100 supporting people on the street (that 
carried another banner saying "for nature's defense 5 years of jail") and
told the people clearly to go away.
Two fire brigade's vans arrived and using their ladder 7 special
agents of the Federal's Police Special Task Forces (SEK, black
uniform, covered face, machine gun) got on top of the roof. They
quickly cut the iron bars the activists were locked to by some very
heavy tool. Fire brigades installed a big airbag on the floor for the
case anyone falls down of the very slippery snowed roof.
At 15:30 h all activists were brought to the police department, without
having done any kind of resistance to the detention.
A large number of tourists were quite surprised by the action and
followed it with interest. The German media were massively present.
Until now we don't know when the 7 activists will be allowed to leave
police department.
Tuesday, 25.1.2000: The arrested activists will see the judge in the
afternoon. One of them was arrested with the lock still around his
neck and its unsure if and when he got rid of it.

You can order photos and tv images at:

e-mail SOLIDARIOS for Germany:
German website with foto:
European Tour website:

24.01.00 : WCD (World Comision on Dams) Hearing in Europe.
Commentaire et communiqué de presse sur la conférence des ONG à Bratislava
there is an English version available

ERN, Bratislava/Le Puy, 24.01.00

Un colloque organisé par des ONG européennes s’est tenu à Bratislava les 17 et 18 janvier. Plus de 60 ONG européennes ainsi que des représentants des autres continents se sont réunis pour travailler sur les questions relatives à la Commission Mondiale sur les Barrages (WCD)*. Le colloque était organisé sur place par les Amis de la Terre-Slovaquie.
La Commission Mondiale sur les Barrages, fondée par la Banque Mondiale et l’IUCN (International Union for the Conservation of Nature), doit produire un bilan sur l’efficacité des grands barrages et évaluer les alternatives pour la gestion de la ressource en eau et le développement énergétique. Elle doit aussi proposer des directives et des règles pour les prises de décision lors de la planification, la construction, l’exploitation et la démolition des barrages.
Des audiences ont eu lieu dans le monde entier mais, malgré l’importance des questions liées aux barrages en Europe, aucune audience européenne n’avait été prévue dans le processus de la Commission. Les ONG ont donc décidé de se réunir pour se mettre d’accord sur la contribution qui leur semblait essentiel de fournir dans le cadre du rapport final de la Commission qui sera présenté en septembre 2000.
Les ONG regrettent profondément que la Commission n’ait pas respecté les efforts humains et financiers déployés pour organiser un tel événement où n’était malheureusement présent qu’un seul des membres de la Commission. 

- Une des motivations principales de cette réunion était de détruire le mythe qui consiste à croire que les 
  barrages ne sont pas contestés en Europe et les cas qui ont été présentés ont en effet prouvé que, 
  même   en Europe, les barrages peuvent avoir d’énormes impacts sur l’environnement et les 
- Un autre objectif essentiel étant de dénoncer le fait que les entreprises basées en Europe utilisent des 
  règles différentes selon qu’elles opèrent en Europe ou dans des pays moins développés. Alors que des 
  directives sociales et environnementales commencent à être utilisées dans leur pays d’origine, elles 
  continuent d’exporter vers le sud des technologies dépassées.

   Les présentations de tous les participants ont démontré que les barrages ne sont pas une source 
   d’énergie bénigne et notamment :
- que de choquantes violations des droits de l’homme accompagnent souvent la construction de barrage
- que les barrages produisent une masse importante de gaz à effet de serre
- que, la plupart du temps, les barrages ne bénéficient qu’aux entreprises occidentales et 
   n’apportent pas aux pays pauvres le développement escompté
- que les barrages ont prouvé être inefficaces dans la lutte contre l’effet des crues

Les participants ont donc conclu que les grands barrages ne pouvaient pas, dans l’avenir, jouer un rôle majeur dans les politiques énergetiques et de gestion de l’eau.

- Le communiqué de presse international officiel :
- Le programme ainsi que des informations complémentaires :
- pour plus d'infos sur WCD

24.01.00 : Comments and Press release of the NGO meeting held in Bratislava on WCD (World Commission on Dams) related issues
there is an French version available

ERN, Bratislava/Le Puy, 24.01.00

A European NGO-organised hearing on WCD (World Commission on Dams) related issues has been held in Bratislava on 17th and 18th January. Over 60 European NGOs, as well as representatives from other continents were present. The hearing has been hosted by Friends of the Earth Slovakia.
WCD, founded by the World Bank and the IUCN, has to review the effectiveness of large dams and assess alternatives for water ressources and energy development and develop standards and guidelines for decision-making in the planning, construction, operation and decommissioning of dams. 
Hearings have been held all over the world but no European one was planned in the WCD process despite the importance of dam issues in Europe. NGOs thus decided to meet to agree on what they think should appear the in the final WCD report, which will be presented in September 2000.
NGOs deeply regret that the WCD has not respected the human and financial efforts to organise such an important event which has been attended by only one of the Commissioners and two members of the staff, despite the fact that the meeting was convened on the date set by the WCD. 

One of the main goals of this meeting was to explode the myth that dams are uncontroversial in Europe 
and the presented cases indeed proved that dams have, even in Europe, tremendous social and 
environmental impacts.
Another main goal was to denounce the fact that European-based companies are using different 
standards wether they operate in Europe or abroad. While social and environmental guidelines start to 
be used in their operation at home, they still export outdated and outmoded technologies to the South .

The meeting documented how dams are not a benign source of energy and mainly:
- how gross violations of human rights are often accompanying dam building
- how dams are producing an important mass of green house gas
- how dams only benefited northern companies while they often failed to bring the expected development 
  to southern communities
- how dams haved proved ineffective in flood prevention

The participants thus concluded that in the future, large dams must not play a major role in energy and water management policies.

- officiel press release
- fore more information on the hearing go there
- for more informations on WCD

13.01.2000 : India Thousands Arrested Protesting Maheshwar Dam
By Frederick Noronha

BOMBAY, India, January 12, 2000 (ENS) - Anti-dam campaigners protesting
against major dam projects in the  northern part of India occupied the
controversial Maheshwar dam site on Tuesday morning. Thousands were

The Narmada Bachao Andolan (Save the Narmada River Campaign) said that "in
spite of police protection" its activists had walked through the night and
"occupied the destructive Maheshwar dam site on January 11 morning at  6.45
am local time and stopped the work on the dam."

NBA spokesman Alok Agrawal said among the 4,000 affected people and
activists who "captured the site" were  senior Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA)
activist Chittaroopa Palit, the internationally-famed Booker Prize winning
Indian writer Arundhati Roy, prominent film makers Pradip Kishen and Jharna
Jhaveri and a large number of supporters from major Indian cities like
Delhi and Bombay, and distant points of the country.

During the march, some 1,500 people were prevented by the police from
moving towards the site.

The NBA said that the police arrested the people around 1 pm.  The police
allegedly "misbehaved" with people including Arundhati Roy, Jharna Jhaveri
and Chittaroopa Palit.

NBA spokespeople charged that Padhri Verma and Annapurnabai of the village
Pathrad and Chandrashekar and Chandu of the village Sulgaon were "terribly
beaten up" by police inside the bus on the way to the police station.

Earlier, at 6:45 am, the people started a sit-in protest at the dam site
with slogans and songs. Officials including the regional Khargone District
Collector Bhopal Singh, came forward to pursuade the activists to withdraw
their  agitation. The talks went on till 10.45 am but without result.

 Villager stands on the bank of the Narmada River that will be submerged if
the dam is completed.

"At about 1 pm about 1,500 people including Arundhati and others were
arrested forcefully and taken to Mandaleshwar Police Station," the NBA

The Maheshwar dam in the state of Madhya Pradesh will affect around 40,000
people in 61 villages in the region, submerging hundreds of acres
 of fertile, irrigated black cotton soils, scores of sand quarries and a
rich riverine economy.

For the past three years, the Maheshwar Dam has been the target of
campaigners who term it "destructive."

Exactly two years ago on January 11, 1998 the Maheshwar Dam was occupied
for more than 20 days. That  occupation has led the regional state-level
government of Madhya Pradesh to set up a Task Force to address the
grievances of the protesters.

 After ten months study, this Task Force recommended a  comprehensive
review of the Maheshwar Project to reassess the cost-benefit ratio and the
viability and  disirability of the project.  Kumars' private company to
push ahead with the project and supported it by unleasing repression on the
affected   people," the NBA alleged in a statement.

This latest case of occupation of the dam site was to demand a complete
stoppage of work on the project and a comprehensive review as recommended
by the Task Force.

The Maheshwar Dam is part of the Narmada Valley Development Project that
entails the construction of 30 large and 135 medium-sized dams in the
Narmada Valley. Maheshwar is one of the planned large dams and is slated to
provide 400 Megawatts in energy.

NBA maintains that that, although the project will have a proposed
installed capacity of 400 MW, the average firm power will be only 82 MW,
and power production in the eight non-monsoon months will not be more than
one and a half hours per day.

The protest organization says the cost of power from this project will be
prohibitively high - an average of six to eight rupees per unit, with the
cost  of peaking power being eight to ten rupees per unit at the point of

 This project was privatized in 1994 and handed over to the S. Kumars.
Project costs have been spiralling from rupees (Rs) 4,560 million to Rs
20,000 million in the past five years. At the current rate of exchange one
dollar roughly equals Rs 43.50.

 The NBA vows to continue with its protest actions against the Maheshwar
Dam. Agrawal warned that "truth and reality cannot be suppressed through
repressive method of forceful arrest."

11.01.2000 : Switzerland:  Last big dam project in the Alps cancelled !

Short before New Year the operator society of the giant dam project "Grimsel West"
(restoring power station) has announced to give up the last big and very controversial 
project in the "Berner Oberland" (region in the Swiss Alps). The 200 m high dam was 
to be built into the existing Grimsel reservoir and would have flooded a part of the glacier 
as well as precious moors and rare mountain pine forests. The planned capacity of the 
reservoir was 2400 million m3 with an annual power generation of up to 1200 million GWh.
The 3 milliards CHF project (1 US Dollar = 1,6 CHF) had been waged a bitter struggle 
against by the Swiss "Grimsel Society" and other environmental associations for more 
than 10 years. However, according to the "KWO Kraftwerke Oberhasli" the renunciation 
of the project had been decided upon only due to commercial reasons. The liberalisation 
of the current market has allegedly made the project unprofitable. During rush hours the 
electricity would have cost up to 0,15 CHF/kwh, meaning three times as much as the 
normal "Grimsel power".
Alternatively the KWO is now planning to rise the existing dam to produce 
additional 200 million GWh/a. With only 1/6 of the originally aspired additional production 
and costing only 1,2 milliards CHF this project is much smaller and is characterised as 
acceptable by the environmental associations.
"Grimsel West" was the last remaining of three big dam projects in the Alps. The other 
two projects "Val Madris" and "Curciusa" where successfully opposed during the recent 
years and both had finally been withdrawn. Solely the extension of the huge dam 
"Grand Dixence" (ecologically hardly controversial) had begun in 1996 and is now 
right before completion. According to relevant sources the latter is going become the
largest not repayable investment of Switzerland. 
Thus the liberalisation of the current market and the strong environmental opposition
has brought an end to the "dam euphoria" in the Alps . 

10.01.2000 : Namibia/ Epupa:Himba steer own development plans

Himba steer own development plans
From The Namibian today.

THE Himba community living along the Kunene river, in the area of the
proposed Epupa hydro-electric power scheme, have initiated several
developments to counter the Government's planned controversial scheme.

Under the chairmanship of Chief Hikuminue Kapika the Kaoko-Epupa
Development Foundation, an incorporated non-profit association, want to
focus on developing the region's economy as well as maintaining and
promoting the unique traditions of communities in the region.

Interim Executive Director Dr Reinhard Zaire told The Namibian  that they
had already set up a food programme for all schools in the former
Kaokoland, and water security points for several schools, villages and

Under the food programme which is funded by the European Union, Zaire
explained, they have fenced off and grown fruits and vegetables at schools
with distribution expected to start next month.

Zaire said they have also registered 10 students from the Epupa area with
the Polytechnic of Namibia to study in technical fields so that their
expertise will be used to secure water provision back home once they have

The ambitious scientist said they were busy with a veterinary programme
under which they will set up an abattoir at regional capital Opuwo from
where they will market cattle for export to Germany.

The Foundation would also look to solar and wind energy as sources of
power, and not the construction of a hydro-electric dam proposed by

The idea is for the Himba people to steer development in their area, and
not simply leave it to others who wanted to promote their own interests, in
the words of Chief Kapika, who chairs the Foundation's board of directors.

The idea of the Foundation emerged during Kapika's trip to Europe in 1998,
when he campaigned against the construction of the Epupa dam.

The aim of the Foundation is to maintain and promote the traditions of the
Himba, Vazemba, Herero and other related communities in the Epupa region,
both in Namibia and Angola.

It is also the Foundation's intention to institute and develop educational
facilities for children and adults living in the Epupa and Kaoko areas, and
to promote adequately-schooled and trained members of communities for
higher education.

The body also wanted to develop health facilities and promote health and
social care, develop the area's tourist industry by developing the region's
communications network.

Further, the Foundation intended developing the region's economy through
efficient farming and marketing of livestock and other agricultural
products, as well as by promoting water management, mining and

The directors of the Foundation believe that their project would not
negatively affect the people of the region nor its environment.
However, they said it would serve as an alternative to the Epupa dam.

The Foundation is receiving financial and other support from foreign
sympathisers - mostly from Europe.
The Foundation's board of directors comprises of Kapika as chair, Kasita
Mburura (Secretary), Dareus Utjavari (Communications Director), Dr Reinhard
Zaire (Interim Executive Director), Muatjindika Mutambo, Frans Tjavira,
Ujeuetu Tjihange and Kuejo Rutjindo.

Kapika and his people have vehemently opposed the Epupa dam scheme since it
was first proposed by Government.

Lori Pottinger, Director, Southern Africa Program,
and Editor, World Rivers Review
International Rivers Network
1847 Berkeley Way, Berkeley, California 94703, USA
Tel. (510) 848 1155   Fax (510) 848 1008

09.01.2000 : CALL TO ACTION:
International Day of Action Against Dams and for Rivers, Water & Life
March 14, 2000

Dear Friends,
We urge you to join us on March 14th as part of the International Day of
Action Against Dams and for Rivers, Water & Life. Over the last year, the
anti-dam movement has gained huge momentum -- from nonviolent mass
resistance in Asia to unprecedented networking in Latin America and Africa
to dam removals in Europe and North America. Let's keep this momentum
rowing. Plan an event on March 14 as part of the Day of Action.

By acting together we:
* Strengthen local groups by linking them to the global network of dam
fighters and river protectors.
* Show the world a strong, diverse worldwide movement dedicated to the
health of rivers and the people that depend on them.
* Publicize the need to move towards equitable and sustainable ways to
manage our rivers.

As our movement grows, so has the number of groups fighting for
reparations. Reparations are measures taken to mitigate or compensate
people for damages suffered because of already existing dams. Worldwide,
people are demanding that institutions and dam builders not be let off the
hook once a project is completed -- and that they be held accountable for
social and environmental damages. Let's work together to send institutions
and dam builders our message.

Another exciting trend is the growing movement to decommission dams. In the
US and France, governments and dam building agencies have acknowledged that
the era of dam-building is over and are starting to tear dams down. We need
to push this message forward around the world that dams do not last
forever. It's time to create a new vision for managing our rivers for the
next millenium.

It is also time to force policymakers to implement real solutions for
meeting water, flood management and energy needs. We need to spread the
ord about alternatives, starting with demand side management strategies
for water and energy and true renewables such as solar and wind energy.

Let's work together to strengthen the movement. Organize an event on March
14, 2000 for the International Day of Action Against Dams and for Rivers,
Water & Life. Reparations, decommissioning and alternatives are just some
of the many issues around which to organize your event. Below is some
information on the Day of Action, including additional resources,
background information and examples of previous events. We also encourage
you to take photos and video of your event so we can better document the
growing movement.

We look forward to your involvement in the International Day of Action.
Please let me know if you are planning to participate and do not hesitate
to contact me if you have any questions. Please also feel free to forward
this message to interested groups.

Water for life, not for death!

Susanne Wong
International Rivers Network

International Rivers Network
1847 Berkeley Way
Berkeley, CA 94703 USA
phone: 510 848 1155
fax: 510 848 1008

**International Rivers Network serves as the International Coordinator for
the Day of Action.


IRN has posters and brochures for the Day of Action available for promoting
your event. Please contact us soon if you would like us to send you some.
Tell us how many posters and brochures you would like and include your
mailing address.

If you would like to see photos or descriptions of past events organized as
part of the Day of Action, please visit our web page at (available after December 27). Also feel free to
contact me at

The Call to Action explaining the Day of Action and urging groups to
participate is also available in Spanish, Portuguese and French. Let me
know if you would like a copy in a particular language.


In 1999, 56 actions took place in 20 countries, including Brazil, India,
Thailand, Australia, Russia, Japan and the United States. Tens of thousands
of people participated in demonstrations, rallies, educational events,
letter-writing campaigns and river clean-ups. This year, we expect over
100,000 people to join in.

The Day of Action was inspired by participants at the First International
Meeting of People Affected by Dams held in Curitiba, Brazil in 1997. They
declared, "We are strong, diverse, and united and our cause is just. To
symbolize our growing unity, we declare that March 14th - the Brazilian Day
of Struggles Against Dams - will from now on become the International Day
of Action Against Dams and for Rivers, Water and Life." (Please let contact if you would like to receive a copy of the original Curitiba
for more information: go to (contact)

Susanne Wong
Campaigns Assistant
International Rivers Network
1847 Berkeley Way, Berkeley, CA 94703
tel: 1.510.848.1155 ext 316
fax: 1.510.848.1008

04.01.2000 :  Marée noire en France: site spécial marée noire et souscription "oiseaux"
.  Nous relayons un message de Bretagne Vivante - SEPN participe au ramassage
des oiseaux mazoutés dans le cadre du dispostif coordonné par la LPO.
Nous attendons vos dons. D'après les derniers comptages, le nombre total d'oiseaux morts est d'ores
et déjà supérieur à celui recensé lors du naufrage de l'Amoco Cadiz : oiseaux marins
(fous de bassan et guillemots essentiellement) mais aussi oiseaux côtiers (limicoles, laridés, canards de tte sortes,
bernaches...). Le petit traict et le grand traict du croisic sont pollués
(les ostreiculteurs sont contents)
, la Baie de Bourgneuf idem et cerise sur le gateau, lourde menace sur
l'estuaire de la Loire (si le pétrole touche le ban de Bilho on assistera à une belle hécatombe). 
Merci Total et Joyeuses Fêtes !!!!
Pour les nantais : si la presqu'ile guérandaise est correctement couverte, nous
manquons de monde pour jouer les ambulances à oiseaux sur le Pays de Retz :
avis aux amateurs ! Si vous connaissez des vétos en Sud Loire capables d'épauler l'Ecole Véto de Nantes, faites-signes !
special website marée noire :
Amtiés à tous
Laurent LE CORRE
33, rue Desgrées du Lou 44100 Nantes
tel: 0240690819 / 0671251459

News older than 04.01.2000


back to the Homepage

These pages and their content are © Copyright of European Rivers Network.
For more information, remarks or propositions, send us a message !.

Amtiés à tous
Laurent LE CORRE
33, rue Desgrées du Lou 44100 Nantes
tel: 0240690819 / 0671251459

News older than 04.01.2000


back to the Homepage

These pages and their content are © Copyright of European Rivers Network.
For more information, remarks or propositions, send us a message !.