World Rivers Review - June 2012: Focus on Rio+20

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

The Rio+20 conference is flying the banner of the “Green Economy,” and pushing for a business-friendly approach to environmental protections. A number of initiatives being presented in Rio promote large hydropower. Yet the world’s biggest environmental meeting is also an opportunity to prioritize river health as a measure of a planetary well-being and sustainable growth. This issue of WRR covers key river issues that should be front and center at Rio+20 – and beyond.


What's inside

The Amazon: Dirty dams, dirty politics and the myth of clean energy. Case study from Rio+20’s home base reveals flaws in the "green economy" model.

Commentary: Jason Rainey argues that a “blue economy” – one that values rivers – is a better path for Rio+20 to take.

Energy Access: There are one billion reasons for prioritizing clean, decentralized energy for the world’s poorest.

Rivers and Food Security: A look at a few super-rivers that feed millions around the globe.

Wrong Climate for Damming Rivers:

Turkey's Dam Boom: Threats to Anatolian Rivers

Reality Check for Guatemala's Energy Plans: Study shows that efficiency and renewables could forestall dams.

Rivers at Risk: Dam Boom Threatens a World of Rivers. Take a graphic look at what's at stake

Fast Facts on Dams and Rivers

Also in this issue:

  • China’s role in a new dam in the upper Mekong in Laos will test the world’s largest dam builder’s resolve to follow through with social and environmental protections.
  • Policy: Some rather surprising developments are being including on various “green economy” lists. Here’s how we can avoid infrastructure developments that impoverish people and the environment