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Dam silly


My compliments to Diarmaid Fleming on the article Dams report offers no solutions says ICID resident (NCE 24 May) which exactly summarised the essence of what I said.

I therefore feel obliged to react to the letter which followed from Rod Bridle (NCE 7 June) as his reaction is based on a complete ignorance of the facts.

The International Commission on Irrigation & Drainage (ICID) has never said that the World Commission on Dams' guidelines are too complicated. We have said they are absolutely inadequate to find the sustainable solutions required.

ICID has always been very concerned about the environmental issues relating to projects. It has a clear stand on the proper and justified solutions for affected people, which can be found on any large scale infrastructure project.

Such issues are on a checklist of environmental impacts for irrigation, drainage and flood control projects published in 1993, and in our position paper on the role of dams for irrigation, drainage and flood control projects. This was adopted almost unanimously by our National Committees in Granada, Spain, in 1999.

All other relevant publications on such subjects are on our website www. icid.

org. We in ICID will continue to support proper preparation of decision making on the projects in our sector. Finding the balance between the requirements is based on the needs of society, acceptable side effects and a sustainable environment. This means that we have nothing to be ashamed of at all!

Prof Bart Schultz, President ICID, The Netherlands

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