Dams Cause Global Warming

Now here's a story the climate change obsessed media can really sink their teeth into: a Berkeley, California, based environmental group claims that dams all around the world are adding to global warming.

If you're keeping score, this means we can't use heating oil or coal to produce energy to heat and/or light our homes. They killed nuclear power. Now they want to ban all hydroelectric facilities.

Just how far back into the Stone Age must we go to save the planet?

While you ponder, Australia's News.com reported this astonishing claim Tuesday (emphasis added throughout):

International Rivers Network executive director Patrick McCully today told Brisbane's Riversymposium rotting vegetation and fish found in dams produced surprising amounts of methane - 25 times stronger than carbon dioxide.

"Often it's accepted that hydropower is a climate friendly technology but in fact probably all reservoirs around the world emit greenhouse gases and some of them, especially some of the ones in the tropics, emit very high quantities of greenhouse gases even comparable to, in some cases even much worse than, fossil fuels like coal and gas," Mr McCully said.

Now, please bear in mind that IRN has been around since 1985 trying to prevent the construction of dams. In fact, as reported by Le Mali Tuesday, IRN is against a proposed $2 billion dam on the Zambesi River in Mozambique (emphasis added):

Mini-floods from Mphanda Nkuwa are expected to destroy riverside fields, essential for ensuring food security during the dry season, according to the International Rivers Network (IRN), a US-based non-governmental organisation (NGO), which campaigns for the protection of rivers and defends the rights of communities that depend on them.

IRN said in statement received by APA that it has campaigned against the construction of dams on the Zambezi, which already has 30 large dams in its basin.

As such, is it possible IRN sees the power (pun intended!) in connecting its anti-dam cause to the new bogeyman of anthropogenic global warming?

"Basically they're factories for converting carbon into methane and methane is a very powerful greenhouse gas - it's less known than carbon dioxide but it's actually about 25 times stronger than carbon dioxide in terms of trapping heat in the atmosphere."

Mr McCully said global estimates blamed dams for about a third of all methane emissions worldwide.

How soon before America's media jump on this societal ill?

As a sidebar, I've been told by several people in the electricity business that many states such as California, Oregon, and Washington could completely power their populations with hydroelectric facilities thereby getting off the nation's power grid.

Unfortunately, groups like IRN have done a great job preventing the construction of dams throughout these states thereby guaranteeing huge numbers of Americans have to rely on fossil fuels to heat and power their homes.

Wouldn't it be wonderful if the media actually reported that?

Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard, Associate Editor of NewsBusters, passed away in March of 2014.