Libyan Violence Dampens Great Man-Made River Project

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“The Omar Mukhtar Reservoir in Libya’s southern desert is the second largest in the world, and an integral component of the $20 billion Great Man-Made River project (GMMR). Begun in 1984, the mammoth pipeline designed to transport water from the south to Libya’s dry northern cities has experienced huge setbacks as a result of Gaddafi’s power struggle with rebel forces. Despite the recently announced ceasefire, CNN reports continuing violence, which is taking its toll on the Canadian firm Pure Technologies’ bottom line. In addition to a delayed shipping consignment worth $10.7 million to the war-besieged country, Pure Technologies expects to lose approximately $2 million technical support revenue.

According to Canadian Business, the company has delayed all construction until conditions in the country stabilize, and have made moves to diversify their business to be less dependent on Libya.

As conditions escalated last week, the British foreign service also evacuated hundreds of oil workers in the region. One of the chartered planes that left from Malta to Gatwick Airport in England was shot at, according to a Guardian report.

Designed to pump water from the underground Nubian Sandstone Aquifer System to sustain the six million inhabitants in the north, the GMMR is one of the most ambitious and costly irrigation projects in history. Critics worry that the ancient aquifer will be depleted.”

Read more: Green Prophet


2 Responses to “Libyan Violence Dampens Great Man-Made River Project”

  • It is in general a long-term mistake to move water, especially ground water. Of course the aquifer will suffer. This is really about money, not irrigation. It is about taking water that belongs where it is, commodifying it, moving it, and selling it for profit.

  • Of course it’s a mistake to move water: pre-Roman, Roman, and post roman water works are all a mistake. We should just leave everything as it is and not do anything. Live on a farm if you’re lucky; live in the desert if you’re not.

    This water works is a great project and may be the best Lybian money spent by Ghadffi.

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