Water is one of Earth’s many natural wonders, and its power can be breathtaking.
The purported dam removal project resulted in the unleashing of a torrent of water at the base of a spillway.
Dam removal is gaining traction around the world as a way to restore ecosystems to their natural states.
In Ohio, a dam that was built a century ago to power a mill on the East Branch of Rocky River was removed in 2020, which quickly led to a thriving habitat for fish and other wildlife as well as native plants.
In the United Kingdom, projects big and small are drawing rave reviews. In 2022, 325 dams, weirs, culverts, and levees were removed, and Dam Removal Europe hands out an annual award for the best endeavor.
The benefits of removing dams include improved water quality, sediment transport, and native resident and migratory species recovery, according to American Rivers. Each dam is different, but in general the barriers disrupt the natural course and flow of water, altering water temperatures and transforming floodplains. The consequences include harm to biodiversity and fish and wildlife habitats.
The largest undertaking in the world is set to reach a milestone this month, with the demolition of three large dams on California’s Klamath River set to begin. In November, a smaller dam was removed.
The hydroelectric dams disrupted the lifecycle of salmon, which are culturally and spiritually important to area Native American tribes, The Associated Press reported.
It’s just one example of a large problem. The Nature Conservancy reports that just one-third of the longest rivers on Earth are free-flowing and that monitored populations of migratory freshwater fish declined an average of 76% from 1970 to 2016.
The restoration of river habitats can help populations of native wildlife and plants rebound and thrive, which is crucial as temperatures rise because of human-produced pollution that envelops the planet like a blanket. Native species evolve to endure their region’s extreme conditions, and native plants in particular can prevent erosion and reduce flooding.
“I love this,” one user wrote of the clip. “Water where it should be.”
Someone else highlighted the “power of water,” while another simply said, “Damn.”
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