A festival has recently begun in Buenos Aires, Argentina — in an effort to support the thousands of People affected by Yacyreta dam, one of the longest–running unfinished hydroelectric projects in the world. Construction of the dam began in 1979 — and so far over 80,000 People have been effected.
The Dam, located on the Paraná River, is a collaborative effort between Argentina and Paraguay. Widely regarded as a monument to corruption, the project has thus far been plagued with political delays, corruption, disputes, and abuses/repression of the effected. Heavily funded by both the World Bank and Inter-American Development Bank (1) — the dam has so far cost $10 billion.
As we should except, the communities living in the region were never consulted, nor received any assistance or efforts from anyone to provide equitable accommodations.
In 1996, the effected filed a complaint with the development banks about this — the World Bank responded about a year and a half later with a proposal to relocate the people, using funds generated from the sale of electricity from the dam — effectively making the Paraguayan victims foot the bill. (2)
In 1999 a Federal court case was filed on behalf of 1200 of the families affected, against the Entidad Binacional Yacyretá (EYB). The case was only just acknowledged in May of this year. In mid-June the court made a decision—admitting to an abject failure—but that the EYB does not have to assist the People in any way because, the court decided, the land does not belong to them so they have no right to assistance. (3)
Here’s a trailer from the film about the struggles of the dam-affected Peoples
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