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Dams And Its Effects On Humans, Aquatic Life, And Wildlife

1137 words - 5 pages

Dams and its Effects on Humans, Aquatic Life, and Wildlife
Sha’Bria D. Johnson
Ecology Paper
Dr. Regan

Dams were created by people as a massive barrier built across rivers and streams to confine and utilize the flow of water. They are also utilized to produce hydroelectricity which powers up small cities providing them with electricity. Lastly dams are used to control flood hazards, store water for irrigations, and raise the water level for human usage. These are many benefits of the construction of a dam, but dams can also be harmful towards the lifestyle and living arrangements of humans, aquatic animals, and wildlife.
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The resettlement plan reimburse and compensates the lost of land, schools, village roads, and cultural living by providing them with a new place to stay as well as gratitude money.
While the creation of dams affects the human living it also affect their health as well. Many of the local people are impacted at both the dam site and in the entire river. Being that indigenous people who live off of land haven’t been in contact with workers that creates the dam, health hazards starts to occur. These hazards may include disease introduced by thousands of workers building the dam such as; AIDS, syphilis, tuberculosis, and measles causing many of the locals to died off. Whereas the diseases related to the reservoir itself is malaria, schistosomiasis, and river blindness due to the unsteady flow of the river and sediment building up causing poor water quality.
The buildings of the dams not only affect humans, but it also spoils the quality of water. Being that the water being held by the dam is almost stagnant or has a slower flow compared to river bodies, it is easier for breeds of insects such as mosquitoes to infect the stored water. When mosquitoes and other insects infect the water it becomes stale and infected with diseases containing things such as malaria, which can be harmful to humans. This now infected water kills millions of people every year as well as starving them. Those who use the river for irrigation purposes to grow crop and to raise livestock must now find a cleaner source of water.
In addition to diseased water, the decomposition of other substances behind dams promotes the growth of algae. As a result dissolved oxygen in the water reduces, which eventually causes the aquatic species to die off. The ways the aquatic species are affected by dams are because of the change in water temperature, removing sediment, and also the holding of debris. Rivers tend to be fairly homogenous in temperature, where as reservoirs tend to be layered, meaning the water is warm at the top and cold at the bottom. When the water is released from the dam it releases cold water which drastically changes the temperature of the river. Many aquatic species depend on a regular cycle of temperature those who cannot die off. When debris...

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