Itaipu and 3 fronteiras

That night the rain started and it fell and fell not stopping until late in the afternoon the next day.  Maddy and I were happy to get lots of work and school completed.  After completing school I took the twins out to visit the Marco 3 fronteiras a spot where you can look and see three countries from one spot (you stand in Brazil and you can see Argentina and Paraguay) it was a bit of a tourist trap but they had a great playground for the twins.  We also learned about Alvar Nunex Cabeza de Vaca who in the 1540’s was the first European to visit the Iguacu falls.

We then traveled up to the Itaipu Hydroelectric plant north of Foz do Iguacu which is currently producing more energy than any other hydroelectric plant in the world even topping the three gorges dam.  We went to the check point but I had a bit of heartburn about the 50 dollars for entrance just to see the damn dam.  So we looked at the scale models and took a picture… of a picture, watched part of a movie and left, without paying a single Real.  The twins would not have enjoyed a long tour anyway.  I was reading later about the dam which took 13 years to build and took billions of cubic feet of cement to complete.

IMG_2666

The downside to the hydroelectric dam was that about 10,000 people were displaced from the upstream valley, but particularly disturbing was the destruction of the Guaira Falls which at the time were the largest waterfalls by flow in the world.  Since they were located upstream of the dam they were flooded after construction was completed. Once the rock structure that produced the falls was completely submerged the Brazilian government placed dynamite beneath the water destroying the structure to benefit navigation in the reservoir, therefore ensuring that the falls could never be restored.


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