Flood impacts kept secret by hydropower plant constructor in Georgia

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Georgian Urban Energy (GUE), the company in charge of constructing the Paravani hydropower plant (HPP), has been keeping secret a study on the potential flooding risks associated with the facility, despite requests and promises from the EBRD that such an analysis would be made public. The Paravani HPP in southern Georgia is about to be …

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Second fatal landslide in Georgian Dariali valley

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While likely not the cause, the EBRD-financed Dariali hydropower plant is being constructed without proper assessment or mitigation of known geological risks. The construction must be halted to avoid further damage. In the night of August 21, only 3 months after a landslide killed 7 people in May, a second landslide struck the Dariali valley in Georgia, …

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Will Georgia go green after EU association agreement?

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On Friday Georgia will sign an association agreement with the European Union, meaning that our country will start cooperating more closely with the EU and even implement more European legislation. This is good news, particularly when it comes to the environment. At the moment in Georgia, we have too many cases in which infrastructure projects …

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Georgian Ministry of Energy orders use of force against local protesters who fear landslides from hydro construction

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Last weekend, the Georgian Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources again left no doubt about where its main interests lie: enforcing the massive exploitation of Georgia’s hydropower potential despite and against people’s concerns and if necessary by use of force. On Saturday, March 8, about 500 villagers staging a road block in the Adjara region …

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Promoters of mega-dam in Georgia use front group and PR campaign and discredit local community

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Georgian public opinion backs the village of Kaishi in the Georgian mountains that defiantly defends its land and tradition against the planned Khudoni dam. The project promoters have now embarked on an all-out promotion campaign including a fake non-governmental organisation. Local communities that are demanding fair treatment when faced with a large infrastructure projects often …

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Georgian hydro projects are a test case for the EBRD’s good governance policies

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As activists pointed out at a consultation meeting in Tbilisi, Georgia's hydropower sector has plenty of lessons to be learned by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. Yesterday in Tbilisi, during a public consultation on the good governance policies of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, an unexpected thing happened. A Georgian activists movement staged …

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Georgian government and investors reject Ombudsman’s offer to mediate in controversy over Khudoni mega dam

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The growing antagonism between promoters of the Khudoni hydropower plant project in Georgia and their local opponents from Kaishi is unlikely to ease when the investor and the Georgian Ministry of Energy boycott mediation by Georgia’s Ombudsman. Today, an extraordinary meeting of the whole Svan community is being held in Khaishi in the Georgian Svaneti …

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Growing solidarity with local communities in Georgia puts Khudoni dam in spotlight

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Protests against the Khudoni mega-dam in Georgia are spreading beyond the local communities affected by the dam. [*] We recently reported how local opposition against the Khudoni hydropower plant project in Georgia is being stifled by government figures and how people were intimidated to avoid negative reporting on the subject. The native communities in the Svaneti region are protesting …

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Bringing Georgian realities to the EBRD drawing board

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David Chipashvili from Bankwatch member group Green Alternative in Georgia talks about the opportunities and threats in bringing concerns from the ground to the attention of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. The annual meetings of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) are always a good chance to meet with staff, management and …

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