Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Mosul Dam Sign Of Iraq’s Hydroelectric Problems

A member of the Iraqi Electricity Ministry told the Azzaman paper that the Mosul Dam, the largest in the country and the fourth biggest in the Middle East, was suffering from a lack of water and maintenance. The official said that the dam use to hold 11 billion cubic meters of water, but was now down to only 40% of that. As a result its hydroelectric power plant was producing less than 100 megawatts, down from 320 megawatts. There is also a lack of maintenance at the dam, and a severe need to repair its foundations. The Mosul Dam is on the Tigris River, which originates in Turkey. Since 2007 Iraq has been suffering a massive drought, and its neighbors like Turkey have been building dams along the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers, drastically reducing the water flow into Iraq. As a result, in June 2010 the Ministry of Planning announced that it might have to shut down its hydroelectric power plants. It did say that it has no plans to build anymore of those types of plants in the future because of the country’s water problems.

SOURCES

Chulov, Martin, “Iraq: Water, Water Nowhere,” World Policy Journal, Winter 2009/2010

Saleh, Khayoun, “Iraq’s largest dam loses 60% of its water reserves,” Azzaman, 7/24/10
- “Lack of water likely to force Iraq to shut down thermal and hydro power plants,” Azzaman, 6/8/10

2 comments:

AndrewSshi said...

Although Turkey holding back on water is a problem, I strongly suspect that the less water is waiting behind the crumbling Mosul dam, the more people are going to sleep better at night. Seriously, it's a disaster pretty much waiting to happen.

Joel Wing said...

Yes they're have been reports about the dams imminent collapse for quite some time now. That's why the Electricity official said that it desperately needs work on it's foundation.

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