UN calls for urgent action to prevent dam collapse in Cameroon

6 October 2005

United Nations experts just back from examining a natural dam in Cameroon’s Northwest province today warned that it could collapse within the next five years unless urgent preventive action is taken.

In a report released today in Geneva, experts who visited Lake Nyos last month say a breach of the dam there is “imminent” and would likely happen by 2011. This would lead to severe flooding in the downstream Nyos Valley, affecting thousands of people in Cameroon and Nigeria.

In response, the experts call for the authorities in Cameroon to undertake a $15 million mitigation project which involves reducing the water level by 20 metres and then removing the dam wall.

 

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