Press Release

Brazilian Mining Giant Vale Voted Worst Corporation in the World

Monday, January 30, 2012
Company wins prize for leading share in the Belo Monte Dam San Francisco, CA – After 21 days of public voting, Brazilian iron-ore mining corporation Vale picked up the Public Eye Award, known as the "Nobel Prize of Shame" in the corporate world. The award was presented during the World Economic Forum in the Davos, Switzerland on Friday. The prize was created in 2000 by Switzerland's Berne Declaration and Greenpeace to recognize a company's record of environmental, social and labor violations and is selected annually through popular vote. Vale's worst corporation award

Protestors Paralyze Belo Monte Dam Construction Works

Wednesday, January 18, 2012
New Construction Prompts Radical Intervention in Brazilian Amazon Altamira, Brazil - Major construction on the Belo Monte Dam commenced on the Xingu River during Brazil's New Year holidays, signaling a new phase in the Brazilian government's intentions to sidestep environmental legislation and human rights conventions to build the world's third largest hydroelectric dam in the heart of the Amazon. The project's first blockades of the river, known as coffer dams, are being built to dry out a stretch of the river, allowing for its permanent damming. Today local protestors paral

Thai Utility Commits to Purchase Power from Xayaburi Dam

Bangkok, Thailand – Thai Senators are investigating whether the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT) violated the Thai government’s instructions by signing an agreement to purchase power from the controversial Xayaburi Dam before it is approved by the Mekong River Commission’s member governments. Members of the Thai Senate Subcommittee on Good Governance on Natural Resources and the Environment agreed yesterday to send a letter to EGAT demanding a copy of the power purchase agreement (PPA). “A high-ranking official from the Ministry of Energy said in a Senate hearing tha

Mekong Governments Delay Xayaburi Dam Pending Further Study

Thursday, December 8, 2011
Civil society demands clear commitment from Laos to stop all construction activitiesSiem Reap, Cambodia – In a crucial decision for the people and ecosystems of the Mekong River Basin, the governments of Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, and Vietnam agreed today to delay the Xayaburi Dam, the first of eleven dams proposed for the Mekong River, pending further study on the impacts of the proposed Mekong mainstream dams. Japan and other international donors will be asked to assist in conducting the studies. No timetable for the delay was announced. The government representatives did not give a joint p

Power from Xayaburi Not Needed in Thailand

Saturday, December 3, 2011
Alternative Plan shows Thailand can meet future energy needs with cheaper, cleaner optionsBangkok, Thailand: An Alternative Power Development Plan for Thailand released today shows that Thailand can meet its future energy needs without any additional hydropower imports, and without additional investments in coal or nuclear energy. The plan shows that power from the Xayaburi Dam on the Mekong River is not needed to meet Thailand’s future energy needs, and that investment in energy efficiency, renewables and co-generation could lower electricity bills for consumers by 12% by 2030 and avoid inv

22,000 People Call on Mekong Governments to Cancel Xayaburi Dam

Wednesday, November 30, 2011
U.S. Senate Committee Calls for Delay in Xayaburi DamBangkok, Thailand – 22,589 people from 106 countries submitted an international petition today to the Prime Ministers of Laos and Thailand, calling for cancellation of the proposed Xayaburi Dam on the Mekong River in Northern Laos. The petition comes one week before the four Mekong governments meet on December 8th in Siem Reap, Cambodia, where they are likely to decide whether to proceed with the project. The Xayaburi Dam is the first of eleven dams proposed for the Lower Mekong River. The petition expresses grave concern about th

New Google Earth Animation Shows How Damming Rivers Will Worsen Climate Crisis

Monday, November 28, 2011
For Immediate Release International Rivers and Friends of the Earth International have teamed up to create a state-of-the-art Google Earth 3-D tour and video narrated by Nigerian activist Nnimmo Bassey, winner of the prestigious Right Livelihood Award. The production was launched at the COP17 climate meeting in Durban. The video and tour allow viewers to explore why dams are not the right answer to climate change, by learning about topics such as reservoir emissions, dam safety, and adaptation while visiting real case studies in Africa, the Himalayas and the Amazon. For example, the tour illus

Brazilian Construction Giant Odebrecht Withdraws from Peruvian Mega-Dam

For Immediate Release November 22, 2011 Lima, Peru: Brazilian construction giant Odebrecht announced yesterday that it would withdraw from a commitment to develop the 1278 MW Tambo-40 Dam on the Tambo River in the Peruvian Amazon. In an official letter to the Peruvian Ministry of Energy and Mines, Odebrecht stated that after completing preliminary studies and learning of the strong opposition by indigenous communities, the company decided to “respect the opinion of local populations” and withdrew from the project. “This is a great achievement for the Ashaninka communities

Court Rules Against Indigenous Rights in Belo Monte Hearing

Wednesday, November 9, 2011
Decision violates Brazil’s Constitution and international human rights convention; appeal to Supreme Court expected Brasilia, Brazil –A district federal court in Brazil ruled today that indigenous communities threatened by the controversial Belo Monte Dam complex—under initial construction since July on the Xingu River in the Amazon—do not have the right to free, prior and informed consultations regarding the project despite guarantees in the Brazilian Constitution and international human rights agreements to which Brazil is a signatory.

Laos Uses New Report to Greenwash the Xayaburi Dam

Wednesday, November 9, 2011
Biased and incompetent Pöyry report makes mockery of Laos’ international obligations regarding the Xayaburi Dam Bangkok, Thailand: Ahead of a December regional ministerial meeting to decide whether or not to approve the proposed Xayaburi Dam, the Lao government is using a report by Swiss company Pöyry Energy AG in a desperate bid to gain approval from neighboring countries for the first lower Mekong Mainstream Dam. Despite acknowledging major uncertainties about what harm the project will bring to Lao people and neighboring countries, the Pöyry report recommends that the dam should be bu


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