Monday, 28 July 2008

A river's last days

Le Monde 2 - the paper's weekend magazine - has got beautiful, sad and elegiac photos of the Rizzanese river in southern Corsica. Protesters have been trying to stop the damn being built that will all but kill the river. But they've lost. Pascal Tramoni, one of the friends who has been trying to save the river, is quoted in the article as saying that "it is the smallest dam in the world but it will produce maximum devastation." Ancient forests fed by the river will no longer have enough water.
What is being promised in return is possible autonomous production of electricity for the mediterranean island. It's a sad story, one that shouldn't be forgotten as the struggle to protect access to water goes on in so many place across the world. At least when there's nothing left for anyone to drink the lights will still be on. Strangely I don't find that much of a comfort.
It's easy for preachers like me to speak easily of holding on to hope. What does that mean when irreperable damage has been done to the environment? When 10 years of campaigning still lead to the needs of money rather than the environment winning out in the end.