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Aswan High Dam

Aswan High Dam

Aswan High Dam

Who built the Aswan high dam?

President Gamal Abdel Nasser was responsible for promoting its construction and bringing the project to a successful conclusion. To do this, he showed great capacity for political maneuver during the cold war, thus, when the Americans withdrew their initial support for the dam project, he knew how to reconcile interests with the Soviet Union, which sponsored a third of the total cost of the project, in addition to provide technical and constructive advice to finish the dam.

Aswan High Dam
Arabic Al-Sadd al-ʿĀlī, rock-fill dam across the Nile River at Aswān

Why was the aswan high dam built

The Aswan High Dam is a marvel of engineering that has played a crucial role in the development of Egypt since its completion in 1970. Built across the Nile River in southern Egypt,

the dam is one of the largest in the world, measuring over 3,800 meters in length and 111 meters in height.

The decision to build the Aswan High Dam was made in the 1950s when Egypt struggled with frequent floods, droughts, and food shortages. The idea was to control the Nile’s annual floodwaters,

which were causing widespread damage to crops and infrastructure and generating hydroelectric power that could fuel the country’s growing industries.

The dam was also seen as a way to modernize agriculture in the region by providing a reliable water source for irrigation and allowing farmers to grow crops year-round.

The reservoir created by the dam, Lake Nasser, is one of the largest man-made lakes in the world and provides water to millions of people in Egypt, Sudan, and other neighboring countries.

What are the negative effects of the aswan high dam?

Despite its many benefits, the Aswan High Dam has also had negative consequences. The creation of Lake Nasser displaced thousands of people who lived in the area,

and the dam disrupted the natural flow of the Nile, affecting the ecology of the river and the surrounding region.

Overall, however, the Aswan High Dam remains a symbol of Egypt’s determination to overcome the challenges of its environment and to build a prosperous and modern society.

Whether you are interested in the history of engineering, the politics of development, or the impact of human activity on the natural world, the Aswan High Dam is a fascinating and vital subject.

Aswan High Dam
It provides water for around 33,600km² of irrigation land.

Why is the Aswan High Dam so important?

  • The construction of the Al-Ghali Dam helped increase the storage capacity of irrigation water in the areas surrounding the High Dam, as excess water is stored in it and then re-released worldwide. It also contributed to hydroelectric power generation through power stations near it.
  • Increasing the amount of agricultural production; Most Egyptian crops depend on irrigation and improving navigation along the Nile River by maintaining a steady flow of water.
  • The dam strengthened and advanced the economic wheel in the surrounding areas, as many factories were established near it, specifically Lake Nasser. It also helped establish a new fishing industry around it, strengthening the tourism sector in Egypt, and increasing job opportunities for Egyptians, according to what it achieved. Diversity in industries
  • The High Dam helped control the annual floods on the Nile and limited damage to the floodplain.

Components of the High Dam

Body: What is meant by its dimensions and measurements? Storage Lake: It is a lake located in front of the dam and a pool of water in front of the dam.

Toshka Overflow Canal: It is the depression that receives surplus water from Lake Nasser. Diversion Canal: It is located on the eastern side of the Nile River. It passes water from the front to the back of the dam. It consists of a front channel and a back channel.

Tunnels: These are the six tunnels lined with concrete, which connect the front channel to the back channel of the diversion channel.

Electricity station: This station is located at the exits of the tunnels, as a station will be built on each branch of the six tunnels.

The History of the Aswan High Dam

In 1889 construction began on the first Aswan Low Dam, the first Aswan Dam. The Low Dam finished its construction in 1902. The Low Dam was 54 m high, and later its height was increased in two phases;

from 1907 to 1912 (5 m height was increased) and from 1929 to 1933 (9 m height was increased). In 1946 the Low Dam was about to overflow, so they built another 8 km dam upstream.

In 1952, the new dam ”Aswan High Dam” began during the time of President Gamal Abd El-Nasser. Nasser first requested financial assistance from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development

and technical assistance from the United States and Great Britain. Initially, the United States offered a loan of 270 million dollars, but it was withdrawn until mid-1956.

In 1958 the Soviet Union (at the height of the cold war) offered a loan of 1,120 million dollars at 2% interest. Construction lasted eleven years and was finished in 1970.

Fact about Aswan high dam

  • The idea for the Aswan High Dam was first proposed in the 19th century, but it wasn’t until the 1950s that construction began.
  • The construction of the High Dam began in 1960, it was finished 10 years later, and its total cost was 1 billion dollars.
  • The dam’s construction was partially funded by the Soviet Union, which provided technical expertise and equipment.
  • The dam provides hydroelectric power to Egypt and Sudan, with a total capacity of 2,100 megawatts.
  • As a result of the construction of the High Dam, Lake Nasser was created, with a total area of ​​6000 km² and which involved the transfer of several ancient Egyptian monuments, such as the Abu Simbel temple, in addition to forcing the migration of a large number of residents from the area.
  • The dam’s reservoir, Lake Nasser, is the largest artificial lake in the world by volume.
  • The dam is 111 meters high, 3,830 meters long, and 980 meters wide at the base.
  • The dam has helped increase agricultural productivity in Egypt by providing a reliable water source for irrigation.
  • The dam is a popular tourist attraction and is visited by millions yearly. It also generates significant electricity, providing power to millions in Egypt and beyond. Additionally, the dam has increased irrigation in the region, allowing for more crops to be grown and improving the lives of the people there.
  • The construction of the Aswan High Dam was a massive undertaking, with thousands of workers and engineers involved. The dam is over 100 meters high and 3 kilometers long, making it one of the most impressive engineering feats of the modern era.
  • But the Aswan High Dam isn’t just an engineering marvel; it’s also a vital lifeline for the region. The dam has helped to improve transportation in the area, making it easier for people and goods to move around. It has also significantly impacted the local environment, providing a habitat for many wildlife species and improving the ecosystem’s overall health.

How many Dams are in Egypt?

Egypt has the oldest dams in the world, the most important of which are the following

Koshet Dam:

It is considered the oldest in Egypt, but in the whole world, it was the first historical dam to be established 2900 years before history, and King Mina built it in the era of the first Pharaonic state.

Kufra Dam

It is a dam established by the ancient Egyptians in a valley in the Eastern Desert, and it was built approximately in 2650 BC to control the flood.

Lahun Dam

During the second era of ancient Egypt, King Maurice built the Morris Lake reservoir in 2300 BC in Fayoum and then built a dam at the entrance to this lake, which he called Al-Lahun.

Charity arches

These barrages are located on the Damietta and Rashid branches and contain 71 openings. They were established during the reign of Muhammad Ali Pasha.

Nag Hammadi Barrages

Located north of Naga Hammadi on the Nile River. It was inaugurated in 1930 AD, and its establishment aimed to ensure basin irrigation for thousands of agricultural acres.

Advina Barrages

These barrages are located on the Rashid branch and were established in 1951 AD.

New Esna Barrages

The first reservoir was established in 1906 AD during the British occupation, while the modern barrages were built in 1995 AD, which generates electricity and saves irrigation water.

Aswan Dam

Work on the construction of this dam began in 1898 AD

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About the author

Magdy Fattouh (Migo) is a creative content marketer and expert in search engines for over 5 years. He manifests his passion in his role as a Creative Content Writer especially in travel where he strives to evoke a strong sense of place in his write-ups.