The Ethiopian government is pursuing the wholesale seizure of indigenous lands in the Omo River Valley to turn them into plantations.
The Valley is one of the most diverse places in the world and is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Gibe III (dam) is being built by an Italian construction company (without any consultation with indigenous peoples) and is expected to operate in June 2015.
This dam has received numerous investments from China and the hydro-power being produced is being exported rather than domestically consumed, despite the fact that 70% of Ethiopian’s lack access to electricity.
As a result, the dam has the potential to destroy and displace over 500,000 indigenous people.
As if this wasn’t bad enough, Lake Turkana, the world’s largest desert lake is at severe risk.
Ninety-percent of the lake’s flow comes from the Omo River and irrigation projects linked with the Gibe III will reduce inflow by 50% and potentially lead to a drop of 20 meters in the lake’s depth.
The unbelievably beautiful pictures attached represent the indigenous peoples of the Omo River Valley in Ethiopia.
Warmest, Lauren K.