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C.2.c. Campaigns Against Dams

Bratman, Eve Z., Contradictions of Green Development, Human Rights and Environmental Norms in light of Belo Monte Dam activities, Journal of Latin American Studies, Vol. 46, issue 2 (May), 2014, pp. 261-289

Harbison, Rob, Cambodia: indigenous protests repel dam builders - so far, The Ecologist, 28/07/2014,

Hirsch, Philip, The Politics of Environment: Opposition and Legitimacy, In Hewison, Political Change in Thailand: Democracy and Participation (E. II.10.a. Demanding Democracy 1973 and 1992), London, Routledge, pp. 179-194

Examines growing significance of environmental movement in Thailand since the success in stopping proposed dam in 1988.

Jumbala, Prudhisan ; Mitprasat, Maneerat, Non-governmental Development Organisations: Empowerment and the Environment, In Hewison, Political Change in Thailand: Democracy and Participation (E. II.10.a. Demanding Democracy 1973 and 1992), London, Routledge, pp. 195-216

Analysis of two case studies in Thailand: the Raindrops Association encouraging villagers to resuscitate the natural environment; and the opposition to planned Kaeng Krung Dam.

Khagram, Sanjeev, Dams and Development: Transnational Struggles for Water and Power, Ithaca NY, Cornell University Press, 2004, pp. 288

Focused particularly on the controversy over the major Narmada River dam projects, but also provides comparative perspective by considering dam projects in Brazil, China, Indonesia, South Africa and Lesotho, where the World Bank and other lenders were persuaded to withdraw funding.

Khagram, Sanjeev ; Riker, James V. ; Sikkink, Kathryn, Restructuring World Politics: Transnational Social Movements, Networks and Norms, Minneapolis MN, University of Minnesota Press, 2002

See also: Khagram, ‘Restructuring the Global Politics of Development: The Case of India’s Narmada Valley Dams’, pp. 206-30; and Smitu, Kothari, ‘Globalization, Global Alliances and the Narmada Movement’, pp. 231-44.

Lakhani, Nina, Who Killed Berta Caceres? Dams, Death Squads and an Indigenous Defender's Battle for the Planet, London, Verso, 2020, pp. 336 pb

Journalist Nina Lakhani draws on numerous interviews, including with Caceras herself, legal files and corporate records to recount the years of environmental protest by this indigenous Honduran activist, who received the Goldman Prize in 2015 for her successful campaign to halt the hydroelectric dam being built on a river sacred to her people, and was assassinated in 2016. She had been under threat for years, and many colleagues had been killed or forced into exile. Lakhani attended the trial of Caceres' killers in 2018, when employees of the dam Company and state security were implicated in the murder by hired gunmen. But the trial failed to reveal who had ordered and paid for the assassination.

Mistiaen, Veronique, Saving Rivers, Saving Lives, New Internationalist, 2020, pp. 46-47

Interview with Peter Lallang, campaigning in Sarawak to defend its biodiverse rainf orest and indigenous people against the Malaysian government's plans for megadams. He briefly describes the Save Rivers campaign that included river flotillas in towns and rural areas and a two-year blockade to stop dam building. The campaign also made international links with the Green Party in Australia to lobby parliamentarians about links to a Tasmanian company, and also top renewable energy experts at the University of California, who provided alternative energy proposals for the region. After five years the Malaysian government agreed to cancel the dam, but campaigners fear it may revive the project.

Routledge, Paul, Voices of the Dammed: Discourse Resistance amidst Erasure in the Narmada Valley, India, Political Geography, Vol. 22, issue 3, 2002, pp. 343-370

Roy, Arundhati, The Greater Good, Bombay, India Book Distributors, 1999, pp. 76

Commentary by Booker-winning novelist and prominent Narvada Dam activist on struggle against the Sardar Sarovar Dam and the wider implications of government policy on building dams. Also available in various forms on the internet.

Watts, Jonathan, Hydroelectric is not Clean Energy - it is Mixed with our Blood, The Guardian, 05/10/2017, pp. 29-28

This article covers a major struggle for indigenous rights and environmental protection in Brazil, opposing construction of 49 dams on the Tapajos river and its tributaries to generate electricity and to create a canal to a major new container port. The scheme is backed by the Brazilian government and includes finance and engineering from Chinese and European companies, and would provide power to soya growers and mining companies.  It threatens the home of the Munduruku tribes and an area of pristine rainforest. The protesters gained a partial victory in 2016 when the Brazilian environmental agency suspended the license for one dam, but the local people fear renewed pressure.