MEDRC Report Examines Cross-Border Impact of Dams

Transboundary Dams Report Looks at Potential for International Cooperation


Released today, a new MEDRC report on Transboundary Dams, examines the costs and benefits of dams that reshape the environment across political boundaries. From enhanced water management to hydroelectricity, dams can provide great benefits as well as impose tremendous costs and complications for riparian countries. Effectively planning and sharing the costs and benefits of these projects are a critical aspect of transboundary water management. The report looks at the legacy, impact of transboundary dams and their potential for international cooperation.

The Report is the latest in MEDRC’s Transboundary Waters – Practitioner Briefing Series.

The series of reports seeks to identify challenges and emerging topics of interest for potential international cooperation using transboundary environmental issues. They are presented as practical guides intended for those working on transboundary waters and those seeking to use water as an instrument of peace. Designed to help overcome the academic-practitioner gap in this important area, they cover a variety of topics such as governance and institutions, comparative models of water diplomacy, new technologies and data methods, and emerging issues such as cyber security of joint water infrastructure.

Though not initially intended as public documents, MEDRC is publishing the series online in response to the positive feedback and the many requests from governments, organizations and individuals working in the field, for copies and updates to be made available.

Previously published and available to download via MEDRC’s website are:

Issue 1: Water Accounting:

Exploring the WA+ framework for communicating water resource data and information to better understand the sources, uses, and sustainable availability of water from a basin or geographical approach.

Issue 2: Wastewater:

Examining the challenges and potential benefits of cross-boundary collaboration to efficiently manage wastewater and extend the water use cycle.

Issue 3: Climate Finance:

Climate Change is the ultimate transboundary issue, and how to pay for mitigation and adaptation efforts is a critical practical issue for riparian nations. This briefing considers the role of Climate Finance in addressing water and climate change.

Issue 4: Energy-Water-Food Nexus:

Guest author Mark Hightower shares his insights on the Water-Energy-Food Nexus, including the regional and global drivers of these cross-sector interdependencies.

Issue 5: Water Cyber Security:

A growing threat to public infrastructure in the digital age comes from cyber-attacks, requiring increased diligence, awareness, and pro-active planning from entities and institutions not normally equipped to deal with such threats. This issue looks at the threats and approach to cyber security in the water sector in a transboundary context.

Coming up in the Series…

A new briefing will be released each quarter and published on MEDRC’s website here. The next issue in the series – Issue 7, International Water Law – explores the evolution of international water law and its impact on transboundary cooperation and conflict. This will be released to the public in August 2020.

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