Home > Africa > How Big Water Projects Helped Trigger Africa’s Migrant Crisis | Yale E360

How Big Water Projects Helped Trigger Africa’s Migrant Crisis | Yale E360

by Fred Pearce

  Donkeys on a dried-out section of the Inner Niger Delta in Mali. Fred Pearce/Yale e360


Donkeys on a dried-out section of the Inner Niger Delta in Mali. Fred Pearce/Yale e360

…. In northern Nigeria, up to 1 million people have lost livelihoods because of dams on the River Yobe that once fed the Hadejia-Nguru wetland and flowed on into Lake Chad. In both cases, says Edward Barbier, an environmental economist at Colorado State University, the dams have had an overall negative effect on local economies, as losses to fishermen, pastoralists, and others exceeded gains from irrigation agriculture.

The poverty is driving social breakdown and conflict all around the lake. Mana Boukary, an official of the Lake Chad Basin Commission, an intergovernmental body, told Duetsche Welle two years ago: “Youths in the Lake Chad Basin are joining Boko Haram because of lack of jobs and difficult economic conditions resulting from the drying up of the lake.”

Yet the decline of the wetlands and the resulting social and economic consequences remains a largely untold story.

Read the whole story here: How Big Water Projects Helped Trigger Africa’s Migrant Crisis – Yale E360

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