Skip to comments.Sustainability Of The Nile Since The Construction Of The Aswan Dam
Posted on 08/24/2022 11:24:34 AM PDT by SunkenCiv
In the 1950s, a dam was proposed to control the flooding and provide hydroelectric power to Egypt, with construction beginning in 1960. The plan was to form a lake behind the dam that would enable farmers to construct a series of channels for irrigation, prevent cliff erosion and provide a reliable source of drinking water.
Prior to the dam’s construction, UNESCO enacted a plan to move historic monuments and structures above the flood waters, including the famous Abu Simbel complex, the temples of Philae island, the temples of Beit el Wali and Kalabsha and the Kiosk of Qertassi near the High Dam, the temples of Dakka, Maharraqa and Wadi es Sebua near the former site of Wadi es Sebua, the temples of Amada and Derr and Pennut’s Tomb at Aniba near the former site of Amada, and the temples of Aksha, Buhen, Semna East and Semna West.
With the formation of Lake Nasser covering thousand of square miles, North Egypt (also known as Lower Egypt) found that the normal deposition of the yearly flood nutrient-rich silt stopped, leading to farmers relying on artificial fertilisers to grow their crops. In addition to putting an economic strain on farmers, the buying of fertilisers also caused a runoff of toxic chemicals into the river, wreaking havoc on the natural environment and ecosystem.
The dam also stopped the ‘housecleaning’ of a deadly parasite called bilharzia (also known as snail fever, schistosomiasis or katayama fever), caused by parasitic flatworms called schistosomes which are released from infected freshwater snails, resulting in liver damage, kidney failure, infertility, or bladder cancer in those infected.
(Excerpt) Read more at heritagedaily.com ...
[subtitle] For Thousands Of Years, The People Of North Eastern Africa Have Relied On The Nile River As Their Primary Source Of Life Sustaining Water.
Alternate title: Cry me a (Nile) river.
Well, I don’t give a dam about this.
Lake Nasser is 2030 square miles, which makes it 1/5th the size of Lake Erie, just to put it in perspective.
I checked google Earth and see no canals or farmland in areas surrounding the lake. Lots of farmland downstream from the lake.
It’s just one dam thing after another.
Never mind the missing natural fertilizer. The biggest problem that reservoir may yet produce is the false water table created by its hydraulic pressure on the desert sand. The geology of the area is the main reason the US backed off from helping build the Aswan High. Maybe the Russians, who did build it, will bring a bag of corks when that water table breaks thru?
Restructuring the eco-system of an arid region dependent on the Nile as it's flowed for thousands of years can't happen without considerable disruption and dislocations of peoples, plants and animals.
And if the claim about that nasty parasite is true, probably scores of thousands, at the least, have fallen victim to it.
The simplistic, though perhaps not the most efficient solution, IMHO would be to suction dredge the silt on the upstream side of the dam, where it accumulates, and barge it down the river to the delta. As I understand it, removal of silt by dredging is an ongoing maintenance issue with most major dams.
I lived in Egypt for several years. The soil towards the Med is extremely rich but elsewhere it’s the Shiites.
Snail fever was one of the plagues of Egypt : )
FTA: This is further expedited by the threat of rising sea levels and climate change
Maybe they could release a lot of water from time to time to fix the various issues. Any article that uses “Sustainability” and climate change and says the sea is rising is not to believed.
Mr Rohl does NOT like the Aswan.
He is probably right.
The Aswan wiped out the Egyptian shrimp industry, but that may have recovered. The rising water table has led to the deterioration of most of the ancient monuments, and Hawass has been completing the destruction by the use of concrete “repairs” that are there for the short term benefit of Egyptian tourism.
Rohl does NOT like President Trump, and his work has always been derivative, so I don’t have much use for him at this point. He’s right on the money about the high dam though.
The water level of Lake Nasser had been in decline for years, last I checked (which was a while back). My approach would be to install a huge version of a pool cover, which is made of that pucker-pack stuff used to ship fragile items. The higher the water level, the more electricity the dam can generate with the same amount of water, which further enhances the ability of the Nile to maintain that water level, etc etc.
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