This page has been archived and commenting is disabled.

The World's Most Dangerous Dams

Tyler Durden's picture


Submitted by Llewellyn King via,

Hydroelectric dams are a nifty way of producing a huge amount of power, but they do not last forever. This is a tale of two dams that will fail unless they are urgently repaired, and if they fail, catastrophic suffering and loss of life will be the result.

The first is the Mosul Dam, which stretches across the Tigris River in a valley north of Mosul, Iraq. As dams go, this one is a civil engineering horror. The dam was captured on Aug. 7 by the Islamic State, and retaken 10 days later by Iraqi and Kurdish forces, with American air support.

Should the two-mile-wide dam fail, which is likely, Mosul would be wiped out and the damage would extend to Baghdad. Loss of life could reach 500,000, and millions could be deprived of water and power: an immense catastrophe piled on the daily pain of Iraq.

The second dam, in southern Africa on the Zambezi River, is the Kariba. This 55-year-old dam, by some measures, is the world’s second largest. It was a civil engineering masterpiece and has held up well, given the spotty maintenance by its owners – Zambia, on the north bank and Zimbabwe, on the south bank.

But the Kariba Dam is predicted to fail within three years unless it undergoes massive repair. If it does, surging water would rip a vast trench down the length of the Zambezi River on its route to the Indian Ocean. The wall of water would take out another giant dam, Cahora Bassa, in Mozambique.

Loss of life could reach 3.5 million, with untold damage to wildlife. South central Africa would lose 40 percent of its electric supply.

While the Mosul and Kariba dams share the same potential lethality, they are very different structures.

The Mosul Dam was a rush job, ordered by Saddam Hussein in the 1980s without regard to the engineering realities of the site. It is anchored in gypsum, which dissolves in water. Daily, leaks in the foundation have to be plugged with grout -- a mixture of cement and sand. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said the Mosul Dam is fundamentally the wrong structure for the location, and called it the “most dangerous dam in the world.”

Even with careful tending, the Mosul Dam is in danger. According to a report in The Wall Street Journal, many of the workers who have kept the dam operating fled when fighters from the Islamic State arrived on the scene. Only one dedicated manager is known to have stayed.

The United States has spent $33 million trying to stabilize the Mosul Dam, but the money, according an inspector general’s report, was largely wasted. Now, the U.S. bombing campaign is threatening to further destabilize an already fragile structure.

Apart from general maintenance issues, the Kariba Dam’s problems are a little simpler. When the dam was built between 1955 and 1959, the plan was to control the river’s flow though six sluice gates set in the wall. The water travels through the sluices and empties into a plunge pool before flowing downstream.

The trouble is that the plunge pool has grown from an indentation in the riverbed to a vast 285-foot-deep crater. The water, which swirls around inside it with great force, is eroding the basalt rock on which the dam is anchored. In other words, the dam is eating itself alive. Engineers dare not open all the sluice gates at once – the last time they did was in 1966.

The necessary fix is a combination of blasting an enlarged plunge pool so the water moves along without creating a whirlpool, and injecting grout -- in the form of underwater concrete -- to shore up the foundation.

A consortium of the World Bank, the European Union and the African Development Bank this month agreed to provide $250 million to save Kariba. Engineers say the work must be done in the next three years or it will be too late.

If Zimbabwe and Zambia can agree on the contracts, work should begin next year. But in that part of the world, the only thing that moves fast is the Zambezi River.

Considering the chaos that has befallen Iraq, the outlook for the Mosul Dam is anyone’s guess.


- advertisements -

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:05 | 5147026 wallstreetapost...
wallstreetaposteriori's picture

Daaaamnnnn.. (pun intended)

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:14 | 5147054 Raymond K Hessel
Raymond K Hessel's picture


Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:15 | 5147063 Pool Shark
Pool Shark's picture



Dam failure not a problem in California.

We have no water...


Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:16 | 5147067 Raymond K Hessel
Raymond K Hessel's picture

Actually, I see a solution for the West on Iraq in the Mosul Dam.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:17 | 5147072 Pool Shark
Pool Shark's picture




Thanks for pointing out new strategic targets for Obama's air strikes...


Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:28 | 5147107 wee-weed up
wee-weed up's picture

When Mosul Dam fails ... the gift of Sadaam to his people just keeps on giving... still killing and murdering them even from his grave.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:29 | 5147120 Pool Shark
Pool Shark's picture



As for fixing that dam between Zambia and Zimbabwe:

"...$250 million to save Kariba."

No problem, this should do it:

$16.95 US should easily cover all repairs in perpetuity...


Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:33 | 5147132 AssFire
AssFire's picture

Zambia, on the north bank and Zimbabwe, on the south bank

Checkmate, you lose dam.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:42 | 5147159 SafelyGraze
SafelyGraze's picture

"Loss of life could reach 3.5 million. South central Africa would lose 40 percent of its electric supply."

it's okay as long as you can quantify what has been lost or destroyed or confiscated or whatever

for example, if the treasury takes 100 oz of your metal, they issue you a Metal Certificate which attests that you no longer have the 100 oz

this Certificate is a fantastic asset

if you are a central bank, you can use it as collateral to borrow vast sums

likewise for the certificate of loss of life or electricity or land or dams in your country

as long as the certificate clearly states a numerical value of the loss, that certificate becomes a fantastic asset for your country to use as it borrows its way into prosperity


Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:52 | 5147182 kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

You really understand.

Why does that scare the bejeezes out of me?

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:53 | 5147338 knukles
knukles's picture

Quite a roll you're on tonight, kaiser :)

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 01:03 | 5148049 12ToothAssassin
12ToothAssassin's picture

So the flood strips away the people currently claiming the natural resources. How is this negative to US interests? Sounds like free resources to me but what do I know?

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 02:28 | 5148164 Freddie
Freddie's picture

The picture of that African dam is scary because you just know that one is going to fail.   Very big big dam in third world country with insane levels of poverty thanks to Mugabe or Obama 1.0. 

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:48 | 5147141 wee-weed up
wee-weed up's picture

My "junkers" above must be from Tikrit.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:08 | 5147223 wee-weed up
wee-weed up's picture

Yep, Sadaam's cousins.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:35 | 5147146 Antifaschistische
Antifaschistische's picture

This is not a problem KBR can't fix for $10B.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:49 | 5147170 Mercuryquicksilver
Mercuryquicksilver's picture

Myopic statement. No doubt Hussien was a real SOB for those on his bad side, but under his iron fist the Iraqi literacy rose from 35% to 98% and he brought running water and electricity to nearly everyone. In general, the Iraqi people enjoyed an improved quality of life.... unless you were one of the tortured and murdered. Outliers suppose.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:12 | 5147232 Overfed
Overfed's picture

I think you would be hard pressed to find an Iraqi who wasn't better off before being liberated with bombs of freedom and democracy. Libyans, too.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:14 | 5147238 wee-weed up
wee-weed up's picture

Damn, you would have LOVED Stalin.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:23 | 5147256 BlindMonkey
BlindMonkey's picture

He is right. Supersonic democracy isn't solving any problems globally.

Except in Lybia. It worked rely well there. /s

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 01:19 | 5148076 fishmonger
fishmonger's picture

Lybia, Libya or Labia... "At this point, what difference does it make!?"

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 00:12 | 5147954 Four chan
Four chan's picture

iraq deserves and needs stalin.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:49 | 5147311 Sedaeng
Sedaeng's picture

Given how much we know to be BS from the MSM no a days.  How much of what was stated to us about Saddam was overly exaggerated or made up altogether?  Govt fabricates victims now or worse, is actually the ones doing the killing.

Now I say all this because I was in Iraq from 2004-2007.  I worked with about 2 dozen local nationals and we talked politics. Especially the older guys (40-50s).  Very interesting stories were shared, but mostly, they kept asking why we thought Saddam was so bad.  They did not seem to think he was a bad guy.  None of them could validate any of the stuff my Govt sold to me hook line and sinker.

Also, I was experiencing what was going on on the ground.  I was also paying attention to the news back home... the stories rarely came close to what was actually being experienced.

This was the stage of my life where I began to question everything that I was ever taught...

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 01:06 | 5148052 12ToothAssassin
12ToothAssassin's picture

Remember the dead Iraqi babies (that actually never happened)!

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 08:22 | 5148478 More_sellers_th...
More_sellers_than_buyers's picture

oh please ... he was a third world dictator.  Fucking scum...the problem was not getting rid of saddam, the problem was what comes after....these people have been living lives of horror for thousands of years.  There was no way for it to function after unless we actually made it a colony

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 15:31 | 5150700 TruthHunter
TruthHunter's picture

 "No doubt Hussien was a real SOB"  

But that's what it takes to keep uncivilised people under control.


Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:33 | 5147134 J S Bach
J S Bach's picture

If Lake Mead doesn't start filling up again, the Hoover Dam may soon dry up and crumble away, too.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:24 | 5147262 BlindMonkey
BlindMonkey's picture

Future anthropologists will go there and say: "Dam! This used to be fillies with water? Incredible!"

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 03:56 | 5148218 WOAR
WOAR's picture

"Fillies with water you say? Where are the seaponies?"


Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:33 | 5147133 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

You do have a flood of immigrants flowing into your state.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:48 | 5147173 Malachi Constant
Malachi Constant's picture

Cheer up, you had a very respectable dam failure once:

And there is some hope for the future: Hollywood Reservoir dam is based on the same project. It is covered with cheerful greenery to prevent unwelcome associations.

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 00:59 | 5148040 A Nanny Moose
A Nanny Moose's picture

Been there. Done that. Bought the T-Shirt. Thanks Billy Mulholland

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:40 | 5147297 Kirk2NCC1701
Kirk2NCC1701's picture

Show me a sizable dam, and I'll show you a target for a tactical nuke.

A small thing can make the lives of millions very miserable.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 21:06 | 5147363 New_Meat
New_Meat's picture

no nukes need apply

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 01:01 | 5148043 A Nanny Moose
A Nanny Moose's picture

No nukes needed. Just some Quagga Muscles, and other "invasive" species.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:21 | 5147080 SHEEPFUKKER

Frankly, I find dental dams to be quite safe. 

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:39 | 5147293 Kirk2NCC1701
Kirk2NCC1701's picture

Q: What did the French Dam Builders say when they finished their job?

A: Eau Reservoir.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:11 | 5147048 kchrisc
kchrisc's picture

See, not just direct welfare that makes people dependent on the criminal syndicate that is government.

An American, not US subject.


"Comical is that while some wail over EBT zombies, they are themselves water and crop subsidy zombies."

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:11 | 5147049 stant
stant's picture

You forgetting wolfcreek

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:57 | 5147053 kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

god loves the colored pepo with large souls (and arses).

We are assured he will provide all the chewing gum, band aids, and used rubbers needed for this trifling matter.

   - United Nations Privy Council, (and Latrine Council Too)


Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:10 | 5147229 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

There is no favor in the Lords eyes.

Proverbs 6:16-19New International Version (NIV)

16 There are six things the Lord hates,
    seven that are detestable to him:
17         haughty eyes,
        a lying tongue,
        hands that shed innocent blood,
18         a heart that devises wicked schemes,
        feet that are quick to rush into evil,
19         a false witness who pours out lies
        and a person who stirs up conflict in the community.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:14 | 5147237 kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

Why are you still bustin' on Ferguson?:)

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:25 | 5147264 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

??  please explain.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:41 | 5147303 Pure Evil
Pure Evil's picture

Dam, that's some funny shit.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:57 | 5147345 kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

Well, a lot of it applies, if you've had a drink or three:),

but I love the maff.  Is it six and/or seven things?

The bible is always hilarious where it shouldn't be.


Tue, 08/26/2014 - 21:19 | 5147405 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

?? I think you get my point.  Tell your ego to go fuck itself before it fucks you, that's your achilles heel.  You are not special, not even average for that matter, you only think you are.  If you don't get my point I will happily make you understand.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 21:30 | 5147441 knukles
knukles's picture

Oh for Pete's sakes, he's just having fun. 

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 22:13 | 5147587 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture


Tue, 08/26/2014 - 22:58 | 5147740 Tall Tom
Tall Tom's picture

He who laughs last laughs best.


I have a picture on my wall that is a representation of Jesus...laughing.


At times I think that Jesus is just laughing with me.


But most of the time I look at it and think that Jesus is laughing at me.


My doom is set as I am not deserving.


He will be laughing at me, in the end, as I perish in the Lake of Fire.



Tue, 08/26/2014 - 23:17 | 5147805 oudinot
oudinot's picture

Harbanger:  give it a rest.

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 03:59 | 5148221 WOAR
WOAR's picture

I thought it was obvious.

God hates six things, and the seventh one is detestable.

It isn't hated, though, because sometimes you have to stir shit up in the community. Some people deserve to get punched in the face.

Cue Jesus whipping the shit out of some bankers in a synagogue. I think everyone here wishes that would happen today...

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 21:23 | 5147412 himaroid
himaroid's picture

It would do the skeptics good to sit in a quiet place and read Proverbs. But a guilty concience makes them sore afraid. They foam at the mouth at the mention of the Bible.

You can mention Rick Perry's name too if you want to get people riled up. I can understand that though.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:14 | 5147055 NOTaREALmerican
NOTaREALmerican's picture

Looks like a good time to throw into the (uh) mix, the world's only known concrete joke:

Didja know there's only two kinds of concrete?  (pause for effect)   Cracked concrete, and concrete that's gonna crack.

(Thank you, thank you,  great crowd..    )

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:14 | 5147059 Raymond K Hessel
Raymond K Hessel's picture


Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:30 | 5147122 A Lunatic
A Lunatic's picture

What did the Mosul Dam say to the Kariba Dam?


You crack me up............

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:14 | 5147057 highly debtful
highly debtful's picture

Is there anything left not to be afraid of these days? Even a dam is SHTF-material nowadays. WTF?

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:21 | 5147084 NOTaREALmerican
Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:31 | 5147128 highly debtful
highly debtful's picture

Are you sure that study about camels not being responsible for global warming was conclusive? Because at this point I don't trust any piece of information anymore. Especially coming from a guy who openly admits he is not even a real 'merican. 

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:59 | 5147196 kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

sponsored by the American/Middle Eastern Camel Council, and Friends of Ugly Beasts (other that those in the White House).

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:41 | 5147301 Pure Evil
Pure Evil's picture

  You actually meant Friends of Camel Toes, didn't ya.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 21:01 | 5147356 kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

Busted, but it made my contribution tax deductable.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:23 | 5147086 kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

There are Roman walls, stadia, and aqueducts still standing in Southern Europe and Anatolia.

Wouldn't it be nice?

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 23:20 | 5147814 oudinot
oudinot's picture

Not only still standing, there still are Roman aqueducts that still work, not to mention bridges and roads.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:23 | 5147095 NoDebt
NoDebt's picture

Look, man, I've lived under my bed for the last 5 years and have not slept once during that time.  I'd recommend you do the same.  It's deadly out there.  Anything could kill you.  Hyper-vigilance and paranoia are your friends.  Good luck.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:41 | 5147158 highly debtful
highly debtful's picture

Thx, I feel a lot better now. 

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:15 | 5147064 himaroid
himaroid's picture

What's that you greenie libs say? You don't mind causing ruin by busting American dams, but will sacrifice the guppies to save your beloved "noble savages"? 

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:16 | 5147070 himaroid
himaroid's picture

What did the fish say when he hit the wall?


Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:21 | 5147087 A Lunatic
A Lunatic's picture

Obama is a dam failure.......

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:22 | 5147088 Parrotile
Parrotile's picture

The Kariba dam is pretty impressive, and moreso in close-up. With the sluices running, the water mist provides the conditions for a very spectacular (and photogenic) rainbow - 

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:22 | 5147092 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

I'd be willing to bet a number of U.S. dams are in need of repair, but Wall Street needed that money for doing God's work.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:25 | 5147099 oddjob
oddjob's picture

Some entity really wants that Mosul dam gone.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:35 | 5147126 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

It sure gets a lot of coverage lately. Shock and awe, 10 years of war in Iraq and I never heard of it until now.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:08 | 5147225 RaceToTheBottom
RaceToTheBottom's picture

Hey, for the children, we can fix it for free.

Money does grow on trees......

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:25 | 5147100 Bastiat
Bastiat's picture

The Mosul Dam is a monument to the deluded, "make-it-so" psychopathy of Saddam Hussein.  

It reminds me of US foreign policy.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:52 | 5147332 pupdog1
pupdog1's picture

At that time, Saddam's sons, Ooh-day and Koo-say, were feeding malcontents to leopards just for the sheer entertainmaint value.

If Saddam told you to make a dam, you would say "right on it!" and you would not bring up fine points like how drywall turns to school paste when it gets damp.

Nice kitty.

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 00:15 | 5147962 McCormick No. 9
McCormick No. 9's picture

Speaking of gypsum and drywall, it just so happens that Walmart is in the habit of putting calcuim sulfate in their ice cream sandwiches. Yes, gypsum, beter known to us as drywall, or, sheetrock. Walmart ice cream sandwiches obligingly don't melt. check it out. Damn, I LOVE me some tasty fuckin' sheetrock!

So, maybe Walmart ICS won't melt underwater either, due to their amazing chemistry. Walmart can rescue Mosul dam!

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 06:53 | 5148327 ForTheWorld
ForTheWorld's picture

According to the comments, those are all natural ingredients in that ice cream sandwich.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:26 | 5147103 SokPOTUS
SokPOTUS's picture

Anyone have any idea how close the Mosul dam is to the fault that rocks Iran with 4.0 and higher earthquakes on a regular basis?

Gonna need a bigger boat...

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:26 | 5147110 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

iAy Kariba!

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:27 | 5147111 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

The world's infrastructure is falling apart so we should probably do something useful like create moar derivatives to "invest" in.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:29 | 5147118 CheapBastard
CheapBastard's picture

Tell me again; what do all those Afrikan Dick-Taters do with the Billions in foreign aid we hand them each year?


[besides living in $15 million mansions on Lake Geneva]

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:31 | 5147130 NOTaREALmerican
NOTaREALmerican's picture

Living next to the Big-MIC and Big-FIN Big-Dicks?   Who knows,  probably living in 15 million DowBuck mansion in Monaco.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:52 | 5147331 seek
seek's picture

They launder the money and give it back to the people that gave it to them -- into different accounts of theirs, of course.

Great scam. Give country $1B in aid, paid by taxpayers of wealthy nations. Spend $100M of it on bogus PR projects doomed to fail and presidential palaces, and send $900M back into numbered accounts of the pols that passed the aid package. In the meantime, the current leader of the third-world shithole that's doing this, in appreciation for the gift, signs over exclusive mineral rights to the pols largest donors, who then build mines to exploit the rights and kill with impunity any worker that demands more than 50 cents a day pay.

It's great to be in TPTB.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:31 | 5147127 flyonmywall
flyonmywall's picture

They put the money in their corrupt leaders Swiss bank accounts, of course.

Well, all that destruction should be bullish for the world's economy, starting with Caterpillar and General Dynamics.

Forward comrades !!

I'd also like to thank the Nobel Committee, for a job well done.

/sarc off

But seriously, the entire world seems like the Zariba dam, heading down a whirpool of its own making. Fuck it, I'm outta here.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:34 | 5147136 ImUncleSam_That...
ImUncleSam_ThatsWhoIAm's picture

As an Engineer, I can confirm that this a damn problem.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:39 | 5147153 nmewn
nmewn's picture

The optimist looks at the glass as half full, the pessimist looks at the glass as half empty, the engineer looks at the glass as being twice the size it needs to be ;-)

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 21:26 | 5147424 PeeramidIdeologies
PeeramidIdeologies's picture

and god forbid that sombitch ever need repairs, cause you know damn well is not going to be anything like blueprints

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 21:37 | 5147454 nmewn
nmewn's picture

Nothing like the original prints ;-)

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:34 | 5147137 nmewn
nmewn's picture

Ever notice how pictures of dams around here are surrounded by...sand?

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:11 | 5147230 kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

Yes, nmewn, but in some places it is sand stone.

That will last at least an extra...  30 minutes.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 21:45 | 5147486 nmewn
nmewn's picture

Good thing the the Oroville Dam doesn't have that problem ;-)

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:41 | 5147157 pupdog1
pupdog1's picture

Allah has ordered 500 lashes and 20 years in prison for Issac Newton for his blasphemy.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:47 | 5147315 knukles
knukles's picture

Then Neils Bohr is in really deep shit.  But nobody can find him, anyhow.  Disappeared with the cat.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:53 | 5147341 pupdog1
pupdog1's picture

Saddam killed the cat.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:47 | 5147165 Captain Willard
Captain Willard's picture

Too bad the article doesn't explain why fixing a dam in an oil-rich country is the responsibility of the US taxpayer. We just passed a bond issue in my town to fix the old sewers.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:52 | 5147328 knukles
knukles's picture

Was a clue in the ad at the bottom of the page:  Bechtel Corporation

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 21:08 | 5147365 kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

Yeah knucks, and I've always wondered why they don't issue tee shirts on those projects that say "Sponsored by the CIA."

At least make a few Yellen bucks off the trade mark.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:48 | 5147175 Chupacabra-322
Chupacabra-322's picture

Forget the Dam. How those Nuclear Power Plants located on Claifronia's "Ring of Fire."

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 00:55 | 5148035 Steaming_Wookie_Doo
Steaming_Wookie_Doo's picture

Aw, those are still holding up. Now Hanford in Washington state, that's been leaking and creaking for some time...I'm sure there are plenty more. Isn't there one that nearly flooded not too long ago? Ft Calhoun, NE? Not to mention all that are holding 200-400% over design spent fuel rods in their cooling pools.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 19:57 | 5147189 blu
blu's picture

Don't worry about the Mosul dam, ISIS is gonna dynamite that bitch one of these nights. Either that, or the US State Department sends them a bunch of money not to, and then it fails on its own anyway.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:00 | 5147194 alexcojones
alexcojones's picture

I'm surprised Mossadissis hasn't found a way to part the Mosul Sea.


Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:06 | 5147216 Fix It Again Timmy
Fix It Again Timmy's picture

What do you mean by maintenance, whiteman?

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:10 | 5147227 SilverRaven
SilverRaven's picture

Here's a free shot for the Oligarchs plan for depopulation,

Sorry, cheap shot

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:16 | 5147243 teslaberry
teslaberry's picture

blow them both up and now!

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:27 | 5147268 Lumberjack
Lumberjack's picture

Kariba will do just fine.


Mosul is most likely rugged enough to survive for decades. 

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 20:28 | 5147273 GOLD AND SILVER...

Fear mongering about dams now ZH?  DAMS?!?!?


Good grief.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 21:02 | 5147355 Rootin' for Putin
Rootin' for Putin's picture

So this half assed dam that Saddam slapped together with slave labor on the cheap.

Was actually designed by Germany and Italy with a built in grouting system that began on day 1 of operation and has 24 grouting machines running continuously, exactly as designed.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 21:19 | 5147403 Barley Burnside
Barley Burnside's picture

Welcome everyone,im your dam tour guide Arnie. Im about to take you through at fully functional power plant.So please no one wonder off the dam tour, and feel free to take all the dam pictures you there any dam questions?? yeah! where can i get some dam bait

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 21:38 | 5147456 himaroid
himaroid's picture

Masterbait and tackle shop right around the corner.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 21:40 | 5147464 studfinder
studfinder's picture

Go out a 100 years...200 years...and so oil runs out, natural gas depletes, even coal runs the hell is this all this infrastructure going to be maintained (hint: its not...or not all of it)...  dams like these, many of them (all?) will collapse and the rivers will flow free again.   Throw in bridges, roads, rail lines, river channels (for barge traffic), ports, airports, etc etc...  I think i get why the Chinese are building a high speed rail network powered entirely by electricity.   

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 21:43 | 5147480 PeeramidIdeologies
PeeramidIdeologies's picture

Only two?! There are scores of these suckers that were built in the 40s and 50s that are on verge, or on the verge of becoming on the verge of requiring major reconstruction. Annnnd oooo it is expensive, and dangerous. Patch work vs the constant onslaught of rushing water is no contest.

That project in SA would be one for the books if one were to be involved. I'm really curious as to why they would choose to blast unstable bottom. Removing more mass from an unstable foundation seems like a bad idea.

Now if they were to install a baffling structure, say of armour stone, or concrete blocks, which I have seen utilized below suspect damns before, they would be killing two birds with one... Stone...

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 22:18 | 5147613 p00k1e
p00k1e's picture

Like modern day cancer, AIDS or Iraq - the money is in the maintenance drugs.   

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 22:41 | 5147674 Zeta Reticuli
Zeta Reticuli's picture

When I clicked on this I thought it was about the world's most dangerous clams. Maybe that article will be next week.

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 22:51 | 5147716 Dublinmick
Dublinmick's picture

Not even close the Fort Peck dam was moved six inches during the last flooding of the Mississipi River. If it goes all of the nuke plants below it go causing many fukushimas.

Nuclear Engineer: Ft. Calhoun nuclear plant “likely would have melted down” if operators were not forced by NRC to make enhancements before major flooding (VIDEO)

We Interrupt Your Favorite Program To Report The 5.4 Quake Near Augusta Is Near The Thurmond Dam-Holding Back A Lake With 1200 Miles Of Shoreline Flowing Toward The Savannah River Nuclear Plant-The Vogtle Nuclear Plant Was About Ground Zero But No Damage Reported-Whew


COLUMBIA GENERATING STATION FINAL SAFETY ANALYSIS REPORT (pdf), Dec. 2011: Grand Coulee Dam is ~250 river miles upstream from the CGS nuclear reactor, while the Wanapum Dam is ~60 river miles from the reactor and ~30 river miles from the Hanford Nuclear Reservation.

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 00:18 | 5147968 McCormick No. 9
McCormick No. 9's picture

Engineer one: "Let's play with uranium, and turn it into shit that's even more poisonous!"

Engineer two: "But only in a facility downstream from an earthen dam!!!!


Wed, 08/27/2014 - 01:27 | 5148089 Dublinmick
Dublinmick's picture

:) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :)


Engineer one: "Let's play with uranium, and turn it into shit that's even more poisonous!"

Engineer two: "But only in a facility downstream from an earthen dam!!!!



Wed, 08/27/2014 - 00:44 | 5148014 Joe A
Joe A's picture

Dams might produce electricity but they always have an impact on hydrology leading to drought or floods, the build up of sediments (rendering a lot of them inoperative) and the production of heat and methane through the decomposition of accumulated biomass.

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 07:22 | 5148360 InanimateCarbonRod
InanimateCarbonRod's picture

I think Vegas has a prop bet on these two.  I bet the Mosul dam goes first, for 400 quatloos...


Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!