Dams, Methane & Carbon Offsets .
Reservoirs created by dams are a significant source of global methane production. Methane is a greenhouse gas roughly 30 times more potent than CO2.
The United Nations has approved 100s of dam projects around the world as carbon offset projects, meaning, dam builders can sell carbon credits on the global market. Carbon credits are purchased by polluters who can meet their emission reduction targets without reducing emissions.
Dam offset projects were permitted under the Clean Development Mechanism of the United Nations Kyoto Protocol from 1997 – 2012. Parties to the Paris Agreement are currently negotiating whether to continue dam offset credits within Article 6 of the Paris Agreement.
Dams, Ecosystems, Water Quality & River-dependent Communities .
Dams block fish passage, eliminate fish habitat, and impair interconnected marine ecosystems. Reservoirs created by dams generate toxic algae, often threatening the health of people who come into contact with river water. By harming freshwater and marine ecosystems, dams eliminate sustainable subsistence food sources for indigenous communities and other river-dependent communities.
Dams & Water Supply .
New dams are being proposed in California and throughout the world as a solution to water supply problems. Unfortunately, dams are a very costly and inefficient way to satisfy water needs for cities, farms and families. Water evaporation losses from reservoirs behind dams can be significant, sometimes exceeding consumptive water usage. It is much more efficient to meet water supply needs through water conservation, water recycling, and by storing water in aquifers where it does not evaporate.