Brazil approves huge Amazon power plant

June 1, 2011
A burnt tree lies down on a road along the Amazon rainforest, 270 Km far from Tailandia, in Para, northen Brazil. Brazilian environmental officials have given their blessing to construction of what will be the world's third largest hydro-electric plant and dam project to be built in the Amazon rainforest.

Brazilian environmental officials on Wednesday gave their blessing to construction of what will be the world's third largest hydro-electric plant and dam project to be built in the Amazon rainforest.

Over the strong objections of community activists, indigenous groups and , gave a green light to the Belo Monte project to be built by the Norte Energia consortium of business interests.

The massive $11 billion project is to be built in western Para state, along the Rio Xingu river in Brazil's .

The Inter-American Human Right Commission, an arm of the Organization of American States, had asked the government to halt construction to allow more time to hear objections from indigenous communities affected by the project.

"This criminal project will lead to the destruction of a large area of the rainforest, and will affect tens of thousands of people," said Antonia Melo, an indigenous leader.

The project was also opposed by American filmmaker James Cameron, whose blockbuster hit film "Avatar" told the story of a peaceful native people on another planet forced to wage a bloody fight against strip miners from Earth.

Once completed, the Belo Monte plant will generate some 11,200 of energy, equivalent to about 11 percent of the power currently produced in Brazil.

Officials said the first building stage will be finished in 2015, with construction expected to be completed in 2019.

Explore further: Solar plant to be built in Nevada

Related Stories

Solar plant to be built in Nevada

February 10, 2006

Construction of a 300-acre solar power plant, believed to be the largest built anywhere in the world, is expected to begin in Nevada.

Cockatoos might halt pulp mill project

June 20, 2006

A $650 million Australian pulp mill project might be halted by the red-tail black cockatoo, although the bird has never been seen at the planned site.

Will dams on Amazon tributary wreak global havoc?

April 5, 2009

The Xingu River, the largest tributary of the Amazon, runs wide and swift this time of year. Its turquoise waters are home to some 600 species of fish, including several not found anywhere else on the planet. A thick emerald ...

Conservationists protest Malaysia coal plant plan

July 5, 2010

(AP) -- Conservationists criticized a plan Monday to build a coal-fired power plant in an environmentally fragile state on Borneo island, but energy officials said the project will provide a much-needed electricity supply ...

Recommended for you

Clues from ancient Maya reveal lasting impact on environment

September 3, 2015

Evidence from the tropical lowlands of Central America reveals how Maya activity more than 2,000 years ago not only contributed to the decline of their environment but continues to influence today's environmental conditions, ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.