Jirau and Santo Antonio Dams on Madeira River, Brazil

The two mega hydroelectic power plants, fueled by the Jipau and Santo Antonio dams on the Madeira River are to be completed by 2015, despite local opposition violation of human rights. In Jan 2016, Nilce de Souza Magalhães of MAB was assassinated.


<div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Description</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld"></td><td class="columns">Among the IIRSA projects approved in 2000- Initiative for the Integration of South American Regional Infrastructure -, there was the construction of two dams on the Madeira River, the biggest tributary of the Amazon River. The communities of Jirau and Santo Antonio, where the dams would be built, launched the Viva Rio Madeira Vivo campaign and oppose the megaprojects that would flood their territories and destroy the areas ecosystem. According to International Rivers Network, the Madeira River is the Amazons largest and most important tributary. Spanning about a quarter of the Brazilian Amazon, the Madeira Basin is a treasure trove of biodiversity, providing home to the spotted jaguar, giant otter, pink dolphin, and countless other endangered mammal species. The river teems with life – an estimated 750 fish species migrate some 4,500 km each year to spawn and feed in the nutrient-rich, muddy waters of the upper Madeira. But all this is under threat. The Brazilian government is building two massive hydroelectric dams on the Madeira. Construction of these projects–plus two additional dams upstream–would transform the Madeira into an industrial shipping canal, providing the power and transport needed to move large quantities of resources out of the Amazon—and accelerate its destruction. The project is the largest of the IIRSA. Two huge hydroelectric dams are under construction – Santo Antonio (installed generating capacity 3,150 MW) and Jirau (3,750 MW)–at a total cost of nearly US$15 billion. Initial construction began in 2008. The projects have been marked by labor rights violations, and have already begun to block the transport of sediment and the passage of fish and threaten the river’s unique biodiversity, affecting the land and livelihoods of thousands of river bank dwellers and indigenous people. The numerous indigenous tribes living on the Madeira banks have not formally been consulted before the start of the construction and so have not given their prior consent (as stipulated by the Convention 169 ILO). Update June 2016 (in Portuguese): Nesta terça-feira (21), o corpo de Nilce de Souza Magalhães, mais conhecida como Nicinha, foi encontrado no lago da barragem da Usina Hidrelétrica Jirau, em Porto Velho (RO). A liderança do Movimento dos Atingidos por Barragens (MAB) havia sido assassinada no início do ano e seu corpo estava desaparecido desde o dia 7 de janeiro. </td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Basic Data</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Name</td><td>Jirau and Santo Antonio Dams on Madeira River, Brazil</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Country</td><td><a href="/country/brazil">Brazil</a></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Province</td><td>Rondonia</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Site</td><td>Madeira River</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Accuracy of Location</td><td>HIGH local level</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Source of Conflict</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Type of Conflict (1st level)</td><td>Water Management</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Type of Conflict (2nd level)</td><td>Dams and water distribution conflicts<br /> Climate change related conflicts (glaciers and small islands)<br /> Land acquisition conflicts</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Specific Commodities</td><td><a href='/commodity/water'>Water</a><br /><a href='/commodity/electricity'>Electricity</a><br /><a href='/commodity/land'>Land</a></td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Project Details and Actors</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Project Details</td><td class="columns"><div class="less">Santo Antonio Dam: The dam itself will be 13.9 m (46 ft) tall and 3,100 m (10,171 ft) long, creating a reservoir with a surface area of 271 km2 (105 sq mi) (164 km2 (63 sq mi) of which is the existing river channel). The dams power plant is divided into four sets of Kaplane-bulb turbines for a total of 44, each at 71.6 MW, for a total installed capacity of 3,150.4 MW. </div><a class="seemore" href="#">See more...</a><div class="more" style="display:none"> Jirau Dam: The length of the entire dam will be 1,100 m (3,609 ft) while the embankment section will be 800 m (2,625 ft). The embankment dam will be arched, 63 m (207 ft) tall and will have an asphalt-core. Its structural volume will be 2,000,000 m3 (70,629,333 cu ft) of which 17,000 m3 (600,349 cu ft) will be asphalt. The dams spillway will consist of 21 gates and will have a maximum discharge of 82,000 m3/s (2,895,803 cu ft/s). The Santo Antonio dam power station will have a generating capacity of 3,150 MW and Jirau dam power station a capacity of 3,750 MW, both costing in total nearly US$15 billion. <br/><br/><a class="seeless" href="#">(See less)</a></div></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Level of Investment (in USD)</td><td>15,600,000,000</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Type of Population</td><td>Rural</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Start Date</td><td>01/2006</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Company Names or State Enterprises</td><td><a href='/company/odebrecht-sa'>Odebrecht Energy Luxembourg <small>(Odebrecht)</small></a> from <a href='/country-of-company/brazil'><small>Brazil</small></a><br /><a href='/company/aneel'>ANEEL</a> from <a href='/country-of-company/brazil'><small>Brazil</small></a><br /><a href='/company/gdf-suez'>GDF Suez <small>(GDF Suez)</small></a> from <a href='/country-of-company/france'><small>France</small></a><br /><a href='/company/eletrobras-furnas'>Eletrobras Furnas</a> from <a href='/country-of-company/brazil'><small>Brazil</small></a><br /><a href='/company/energia-sustentavel-do-brasil'>Energia Sustentável do Brasil</a> from <a href='/country-of-company/brazil'><small>Brazil</small></a></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Relevant government actors</td><td>Brazilian government, FUNAI (governement's indigenous affairs department), Brazil’s Economic and Social Development Bank, BNDES</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">International and Financial Institutions</td><td><a href='/institution/inter-american-development-bank'>Inter-American Development Bank <small>(IADB)</small></a><br /><a href='/institution/river-plate-basin-development-fund-fondo-financiero-para-el-desarrollo-de-la-cuenca-del-plata'>River Plate basin development fund - Fondo Financiero para el Desarrollo de la Cuenca del Plata</a><br /><a href='/institution/banco-santander'>Banco Santander</a> from <a href='/country-of-institution/spain'><small>Spain</small></a><br /><a href='/institution/inter-american-commission-on-human-rights'>Inter-American Commission on Human Rights</a><br /><a href='/institution/banco-nacional-de-desenvolvimento-economico-e-social'>Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento Econômico e Social <small>(BNDES)</small></a> from <a href='/country-of-institution/brazil'><small>Brazil</small></a></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Environmental justice organisations and other supporters</td><td>Movement Viva o Rio Madeira Vivo, Brazil, The Instituto Madeira Vivo (The Living Madeira Institute)</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">The Conflict and the Mobilization</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)</td><td>MEDIUM (street protests, visible mobilization)</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">When did the mobilization begin</td><td>PREVENTIVE resistance (precautionary phase)</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Groups Mobilizing</td><td>Indigenous groups or traditional communities<br /> International ejos<br /> Local ejos<br /> Neighbours/citizens/communities<br /> Social movements</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Forms of Mobilization</td><td>Creation of alternative reports/knowledge<br /> Development of a network/collective action<br /> Development of alternative proposals<br /> Involvement of national and international NGOs<br /> Lawsuits, court cases, judicial activism<br /> Media based activism/alternative media<br /> Objections to the EIA<br /> Official complaint letters and petitions<br /> Public campaigns<br /> Street protest/marches</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Impacts</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Environmental Impacts</td><td><strong>Potential: </strong>Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Floods (river, coastal, mudflow), Food insecurity (crop damage), Global warming, Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Deforestation and loss of vegetation cover, Large-scale disturbance of hydro and geological systems, Reduced ecological / hydrological connectivity</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Socio-economic Impacts</td><td><strong>Potential: </strong>Displacement, Loss of livelihood, Violations of human rights, Loss of landscape/sense of place</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Other</td><td>Displacement of people</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Outcome</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Project Status</td><td>Under construction</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Pathways for conflict outcome / response</td><td>Deaths<br /> Institutional changes<br /> Negotiated alternative solution<br /> Strengthening of participation<br /> Application of existing regulations<br /> Nilce de Souza Magalhães, activist of MAB, was killed in Jan 2016 [1]</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Do you consider this as a success?</td><td>No</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Why? Explain briefly.</td><td>Despite the protests, the construction of the dams is underway, it started commercial operations by 2012 and construction is expected to be over by 2015.</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Sources and Materials</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Legislations</td><td><table><tr><td><p> Convention 169 ILO<br/></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">References</td><td><table><tr><td><p> Escritos sobre o agua, Forum Carajas, 2003.<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Las Venas del ALCA: Integracion de la Infraestructura Regional de Sudamrica, IIRSA.<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Bolivia, un pas de transito y de extraccin de recursos, Fobomade, 2003.<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Otro paso en la explotacin de los pueblos y territorios Sudamericanos, Friends of the Earth, 2003.<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> The El Norte Amazonico de Bolivia y el Complejo del rio Madera. Fobomade, 2007.<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> documentos/cartilhariomadeiravivo.pdf<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://philip.inpa.gov.br/publ_livres/Dossie/Mad/Outros" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Madeira Fact Sheet, IRN, 2007<br/><a class="refanch small" href="https://www.internationalrivers.org/files/attached-files/madeirafact.pdf" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Links</td><td><table><tr><td><p> Energia Sustentavel do Brasil<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.energiasustentaveldobrasil.com.br" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Inter-American Development Bank<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.iadb.org/" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> IBAMA<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.ibama.gov.br/" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Madeira River, International Rivers Campaigns<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.internationalrivers.org/campaigns/madeira-river" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> L'Inganno dei Green Bond, Re:Common<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.recommon.org/linganno-dei-green-bond/" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Madeira River dams, Survival<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.survivalinternational.org/about/madeira-dams" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> The Madeira River Complex, AmazonWatch<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://amazonwatch.org/work/the-madeira-river-complex" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> [1] MAB, 22June2016, Corpo de Nicinha é encontrado após cinco meses desaparecido<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.mabnacional.org.br/noticia/corpo-nicinha-encontrado-ap-s-cinco-meses-desaparecido" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Media Links</td><td><table><tr><td><p> <a class="refanch small" href="http://assets.survivalinternational.org/documents/272/madeira_map_lo_res.jpg" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Other Documents</td><td><table><tr><td><p><strong>Jirau Dam under on-going construction on the Madeira River</strong> The Washington Post<br/><a class="refanch small" href="https://file.ejatlas.org/docs/Jirau_dam_bis.jpg" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p><strong>Jirau Dam on the Madeira River, 2012</strong> Nationalgeographic<br/><a class="refanch small" href="https://file.ejatlas.org/docs/Jirau_dam.jpg" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p><strong>Nilce de Souza Magalhães</strong> Nilce de Souza Magalhães (MAB), killed in Jan 2016<br/><a class="refanch small" href="https://file.ejatlas.org/docs/Brazil_Nilce_de_Souza_Magalha_es.jpg" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr></table></td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Meta Information</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Contributor</td><td>Lucie Greyl & Joan Martinez Alier</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Last update</td><td>23/06/2016</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div>
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