Impacts Essay

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Environmental impact of reservoirs The environmental impact of reservoirs comes under ever increasing scrutiny as the global demand for water and energy increases and the number and size of reservoirs increases. Dams and reservoirs can be used to supply drinking water, generate hydroelectric power, increase the water supply for irrigation, provide recreational opportunities, and improve certain aspects of the environment.[citation needed] However, adverse environmental and sociological impacts have been identified during and after many reservoir constructions.[citation needed] Whether reservoir projects are ultimately beneficial or detrimental to either the environment or surrounding human populations has been debated since the 1960s and likely before then, as well.[citation needed] In 1960 the construction of Llyn Celyn and the flooding of Capel Celyn provoked political uproar which continues to this day. More recently, the construction of Three Gorges Dam and other similar projects throughout Asia, Africa andLatin America have generated considerable environmental and political debate. Impact below dam [edit] Riverline and coastal erosion [edit] As all dams result in reduced sediment load downstream, a dammed river is said to be "hungry" for sediment. Because the rate of deposition of sediment is greatly reduced since there is less to deposit but the rate of erosion remains nearly constant, the water flow eats away at the river shores and riverbed, threatening shoreline ecosystems, deepening the riverbed, and narrowing the river over time. This leads to a compromised water table, reduced water levels, homogenization of the river flow and thus reduced ecosystem variability, reduced support for wildlife, and reduced amount of sediment reaching coastal plains and deltas.[6] This prompts coastal erosion, as beaches are unable to replenish what waves erode without

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