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Rising Risks: How Dams Trigger Landslides and Put Communities at Risk

BySamantha Nguyen

Mar 27, 2024
Connection found between 2019 Iranian landslide and construction of dam, say scientists

Dams have become increasingly popular in recent years, either to quench the growing demand for water or generate power. However, dam construction comes with its own set of concerns regarding the impact on the environment. A recent study has brought to light the link between dam building and increased landslide activity.

One such incident occurred in March 2019 when a landslide devastated Hoseynabad-e Kalpush village in north-central Iran, causing damage to 300 houses and cutting off access to the nearby dam. Local authorities initially attributed the landslide to heavy rainfall and denied any connection to the dam. However, scientists from the German Research Centre for Geosciences have found evidence that contradicts this claim.

Analysis of satellite data from the region revealed that the stable slope where the landslide occurred began to show movement after the reservoir behind the dam started filling with water in 2013. Over time, the land movement progressed from lower portions of the slope to higher ones as water levels in reservoirs increased. These findings suggest that accumulating water in dams can raise local water tables, making slopes more prone to movement, ultimately leading to landslides being triggered by dam construction.

This study serves as a warning for engineers designing and building dams to consider potential risks associated with reservoir filling and its impact on surrounding slopes. By understanding and mitigating these risks, we can better protect communities and infrastructure from potentially devastating consequences caused by landslides triggered by dam construction.

By Samantha Nguyen

As a content writer at newsqwe.com, I am passionate about crafting engaging and informative articles that captivate our audience. With a background in journalism and a keen eye for detail, I strive to deliver content that is not only well-researched but also adds value to our readers' lives. From breaking news stories to in-depth features, I take pride in my ability to tell compelling stories that resonate with our diverse audience. When I'm not typing away at my keyboard, you can find me exploring new cafes, practicing yoga, or getting lost in a good book. I am thrilled to be a part of the newsqwe.com team and look forward to sharing my love for writing with all of our readers.

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