New video release: dialogue on dams in West Africa

A new documentary film, entitled 'Large dams in West Africa: Building the Dialogue' was recently released and made available on YouTube, in order to raise awareness and communicate the work of IUCN in facilitating dialogue on dam developments in West Africa.

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The one hour documentary film is a medium of information for various audiences (policy makers, civil society, technical and financial partners) about the challenges and opportunities related to large dams in West Africa. These challenges were addressed through four sites in the region: Sélingué in Mali, Bagre in Burkina Faso, Diama in Senegal and Kandadji in Niger.

The film was produced under the project 'Regional Dialogue on major water infrastructure in West Africa',  launched in 2008 by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).  In deciding to support ECOWAS in its approach, IUCN's goal is to promote environmentally sustainable and socially equitable water resources for West Africa, by facilitating the extension of dialogue to non-state actors, civil society organizations and users.

"In Burkina Fase, only 1 out of 4 people has access to electricity. No access to electricity means missing the minimal conditions needed for access to hygiene and therefore health, education, and economic activities", said Adame Nambré, President of the National Commission on Dams of Burkina Faso. Currently there are 140 dams in West Africa, with at least 30 new dams planned.

The documentary film 'Large dams in West Africa: Building the Dialogue', will be used by IUCN and partners to disseminate recommendations of the regional consultation between stakeholders, and to promote good practices in designing, constructing and operating large water infrastructures.

The film is available in French and English, and can be watched on YouTube or the Water Channel.

For more information, please contact

Work area: 
West and Central Africa
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