Dam busters: a structure is removed on the Hučava River in Slovakia, June 2021. Photograph: Rob Kleinjans
“An increasing number of governments, NGOs, companies and communities are understanding the importance of halting and reversing nature loss, and buying into the fact that dam removal is a river-restoration tool that boosts biodiversity and enhances climate resilience. We’re also seeing lessons being learned from previous dam removals, new countries kickstarting removals, and new funds, including crowdfunding.”
There’s a growing movement in support of the Glen Canyon Dam Removal altogether. With the specter of climate change looming, those calls may grow louder. But whether or not you agree with that decision, there’s a lot to be learned from the history of the dam’s construction.
The Glen Canyon Dam on the Utah/Arizona Boarder on August 21, 2020. Sam Gross, the Saint george Spectrum & Daily News
Some environmental groups and water honchos have sponsored a “Rewilding of Glen Canyon” contest, with the winner getting $4,000 “and counting.” The contest’s goal is to reconnect the Colorado River above and below a dismantled dam, to restore the beauty of a glorious place now submerged by Lake Powell — just 26% full.
Lower Granite Dam seen on the Snake River in Pomeroy, Washington. Photograph: Mason Trinca/The Guardian
In 2016, it was reported that the four dams were producing on average over 1,000 megawatts of energy each year – or enough to power 800,000 American homes. But as the renewable energy sector continues to shift and hydropower competes against low-cost renewable energy, including solar and wind, there is some uncertainty when it comes to what the future will look like for the industry. Against this backdrop, more than $17bn has been spent in recent decades as part of federal salmon recovery efforts.
This March 3, 2020, file photo, shows the Iron Gate Dam, powerhouse and spillway on the lower Klamath River near Hornbrook, Calif. (AP Photo/Gillian Flaccus, File)AP
If the dams remained, PacifiCorp would likely have to spend hundreds of millions of dollars to retrofit the structures to comply with today’s environmental laws. As it is, the utility has said the electricity generated by the dams no longer makes up a significant part of its power portfolio.
“Carbon emissions from dams had been significantly underestimated,” wrote Matthias Koschorreck, a biogeochemist and the study’s senior author, in a press release. Where climate policymakers had once considered them a carbon sink, he argues, they should now be thought of as a source.
This Swiftwater Films time lapse, produced by director Shane Anderson and filmed and edited by Jesse Andrew Clark, shows the monthslong process of deconstructing the Nooksack Dam on the Middle Fork of Washington’s Nooksack River. This restoration will repair 16 miles of habitat for threatened salmon and steelhead.
The largest dam set to come down on the Klamath is the Iron Gate Dam, standing at 173ft (53m) high (Credit: Dave Meurer)
“I’ve spent my career helping design fish restoration projects of varying types,” says Belchik. In terms of impact, “restoration of passage [projects] are always the most successful and most immediate”.
Built in 1938, The striking boat has an interesting history; the vessel acted as a North Sea lighthouse up until 2004 when it was converted into a six-bedroom home by its current owner, a photographer.
The Phoenix Net Loft has deteriorated even further, according to a recent engineering report, and could cause contamination to the Fraser River if it collapsed.
Photograph By FILE PHOTO
City staff are asking council to approve a plan to deconstruct the 1940s building where fishing nets were cleaned and repaired until the early 2000s, but the plan includes keeping as many of the “heritage elements” as possible.
A 2016 photo of the U.S. Gypsum marine loading crib in Tawas Bay on Lake Huron, offshore of the company’s former mine and overwater tramway in Alabaster Township, Mich. (Garret Ellison | MLive)Garret Ellison | MLive
As part of a mutual agreement with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, USG stated that it will be documenting the deconstruction of the historic structure for archiving purposes. Images will regularly be shared on the company’s webpage.
That Gregory lived a past life as a sailor is evident in the nautical theme running through Vena Cava’s design, which playfully juxtaposes with the winery’s desert setting. That he has a soft spot for sustainability is evident in much of it being made from reclaimed materials.
Construction has started on a nearly 6,000-square-foot vessel deconstruction facility in Ilwaco slated for completion this fall. The facility will be located at 165 Howerton Ave., the current location of a boat-storage yard. Luke Whittaker
Derelict vessels often contain large quantities of oil, lead, asbestos or other toxic substances that could pose a threat to animals and the environment. If leaked or leached, these can injure or kill marine mammals, waterfowl and other aquatic life; and contaminate aquatic lands, nearby shorelines and water. “There’s a lot on a vessel to prevent life from attaching. They’ve found those contaminants in orcas and salmon, which could be attributed to derelict vessels. We wish we could remove them all,” Wood
Back at the beginning of the 1900s, Equihen Plage was known, as one of the best spots for fishing. As many boats were left to be destroyed on the shore, local fishermen used them as roofs for their handmade shelters. At the time, the area was called Quartier des Quilles en l’Air: the neighborhood of keels in the air.
Timber salvaged after upgrades at Geraldton Fishing Boat Harbour was turned into a striking board room table by a Geraldton furniture designer.Picture: Geraldton Port Authority
Timbers and piles discarded during upgrades to part of Geraldton Fishing Boat Harbour last year have been given a new lease on life and turned into a piece of furniture which will serve as a reminder of Geraldton’s maritime history.
The SS United States, seen here on Jan 21, 2014 remains docked in Philadelphia for now. Photo Credit: Chris Ware
Uniondale-based RXR will work on an adaptive reuse plan and suitable site for the 990-foot ship that set trans-Atlantic speed records after its launch in 1952, but which has been deteriorating at a pier in Philadelphia since 1996.
Fitted with electrical sockets, a wood-burning stove sourced from the original mast-step, and a sail canvas door, the attention to detail is impressive. The shed has even been made watertight using marine resin. Boat Pod is a finalist in the Unique category.
“We’ve been absolutely blown away by the incredible, imaginative and innovative sheds entered into this year’s competition,” says Shed of the Year founder Andrew Wilcox. “I’ve judged the finalists eleven years running now, and it’s amazing to see how the sheds evolve each year as entrants take inspiration from others and realize that creating your own shed on a budget is a more than achievable project.”
Naturalizing the stretch of river that snakes through downtown Flint will transform a concrete wasteland into a usable public space that is aesthetically pleasing. It also will complement the rest of the 142-mile long Flint River, parts of which are as remote and scenic as rivers in northern Michigan.
“We know what these industrial spaces can become and how they can be reinvented. We’ve seen the evolution of the Navy Yard. When we talked to the people at Hugo Neu about their vision about Kearny Point, we really got it. It resonated with us.”
By 2020, the Port of Ilwaco could be home to a new shipbreaking facility that would specialize in dismantling and disposing of derelict vessels. In the recently-approved supplemental budget, the Legislature committed $950,000 for the derelict vessel facility and other work in the port. The investment includes $600,000 for building an enclosed deconstruction facility, $250,000 to replace the port’s stormwater system and $100,000 for paving and regrading work that will help protect water quality.
In 2011 Gísli decided to open a small restaurant, Slippurinn, with his family. He set himself the ambitious aim of raising the profile of Iceland’s gastronomic culture. The choice of location was not random: an abandoned machine workshop that used to serve the old shipyard. Shelves of tools and many of the old instruments are still in place, while the tables and many other furnishings have been made from reclaimed ship parts. The restaurant soon built a loyal following.”
Tobey Parsons of McGee Salvage checks in on work to a home in Svensen that utilized reclaimed timber from the trestle bridge at Clatsop Spit.
“When we realized the wood was in good shape but untreated, we started to explore options of recycling rather than cutting it up as firewood,” Morrill said. “I was talking to some local builders, and one of them suggested I call Tobey, and he developed a scheme.”
They brought in a mobile mill and spent four months processing the timbers into boards 16 to 19 feet long and more than 3/4-inch thick. Some of the boards have found their way onto the floor of a wooden barn house under construction by general contractor Duane Clayton in Svensen.
J. DICKEY Conference table made from the boards of Seaport shipwreck.
On Aug. 11, Dickey will display furniture he made using wood from the historic ship during an event at District Hall, a Seaport venue on Northern Avenue not far from where the vessel’s remains were uncovered. He’ll also share with the public pieces of the ship that weren’t transformed into furniture, offering history buffs and boat enthusiasts a chance to get up close and inspect the leftovers. “All the pieces of the ship will be represented,” he said. “Any person with knowledge in ship-building and sailing will get to see how they originally put this ship together.”
Taking place at RAI Amsterdam on Monday 16 November, speakers and panellists at the conference will present their experiences and lead debates on the subject of End-of-Life Boats (ELBs) and how their growing numbers can be practically dealt with in the coming years.
More recently a study carried out by ICOMIA (The International Council of Marine Industry Associations) has estimated that there are more than 6 million recreational craft in Europe alone. This also revealed that historically, disposal methods have been crude, and generally involve chopping up composite structures and reducing them to fragments that can be sent to landfill, which is considered unsustainable in the long run. So again, recycling is the only realistic option for the future…
Pier A after restoration. Photograph by Edward Hueber/archphoto
“This structure, the oldest functioning pier in New York City, sat vacant and deteriorating for three decades,” said Jay DiLorenzo, President of the Preservation League. “Built in 1886 at the tip of Lower Manhattan, it was once a command center for the bustling harbor traffic on the Hudson River. But its floor plan, based on its original use as administrative offices for government agencies, presented significant challenges for adaptive reuse as a public gathering space. As so much of New York’s maritime heritage is threatened, this rehabilitation demonstrates how the city can both embrace the historic waterfront’s history and give it new life, while preparing for the challenges of a changing coastal environment.”
Will Bremerton, the town best known for blackberries and naval base, be home to an inlet-spanning bridge fashioned from decommissioned warships? (Photo: Clemens Vasters/flickr)
What hasn’t been done before — and what Young is pitching via a proposed $90,000 feasibility study recently introduced into the state highway budget — is a floating bridge built entirely from repurposed Vietnam-era aircraft carriers. Channeling Xerxes, Young envisions a string (well, just three) of these retired — mothballed, technically — Navy vessels, each a little over 1,000-feet-long, spanning Sinclair Inlet.
Austrian company Fipofix believes that it’s identified a material better-suited to the high seas, saying that its specially processed volcanic fiber-based composite, more commonly known as basalt fiber, offers a better performance-price ratio than carbon fiber or fiberglass and can be recycled after use.
Most people think of reclaimed wood from old barns and schoolhouses. Our story was born in 2004 down at the shipyard, with a lot of grit and a couple of friends’ idea to rescue some really amazing wood from winding up in a landfill. Wood from far off ports arrives daily as shipping pallets and crates, but it’s extremely difficult to recycle. Through years of trial and error we pioneered a method for up-cycling these dockside discards into products with lasting value.
This video explains the why, how and what we do to make the most of every stick of wood we reclaim.
The Washington State Department of Ecology (DOE) has finalized their vessel deconstruction general permit, which allows businesses and boat owners to deconstruct older vessels that are still in the water.
The complex is made up of an array of formerly-floating homes that are no longer seaworthy but can still be fixed up and find a second life on land. As PopUpCity reports, “The imaginatively retro-fitted houseboats that make up the creative quarter are all placed around a winding bamboo walkway and the surrounding landscape consists of plants that clean the soil.”
Thanks to Ruth Trocolli the archaeologist for the District of Columbia Historic Preservation Office, for this gem of an article.
The Kinnickinnic River in Milwaukee.
Maher hopes to put his new skills to work and continue deconstruction work in the area. He has learned that it is possible to efficiently take a structure apart, salvaging valuable materials and greatly reducing what goes to the landfill. As the construction sector of the economy rebounds, the success of the Kinnickinnic River project could encourage less traditional demolition and greater use of deconstruction techniques.
“If things can be reused and we can keep things out of landfill,” Maher says, “why not put the materials to use?”
The Partnership for Working Families, a grantee of the Surdna Foundation, is a national network of leading regional advocacy organizations who support innovative solutions to our nation’s economic and environmental problems.
Before dying one of the workers alerted his family and the yard managers of the accident via his mobile phone. The families rushed to the yard, but found the gates locked.
“One of the survivors told me that he could have saved at least two of the workers if the yard had provided them with oxygen. Instead, the yard management wanted to hide the bodies,” said Ali Shahin. “The families, who had been alerted of the accident, finally managed to break the gates of the yard. But it was, unfortunately, too late to save the workers.”
Zakir Hossain, deputy inspector general of the Department of Inspection for Safeties of Shops and Establishments, told the newspaper, “Our inspector visited the factory and found the accident had occurred due to negligence. We will serve a notice on the owner.”
Shipbreaking involves the dismantling of old ships for scrap recycling of their steel and other equipment on board.
Around one million tonnes of steel are dismantled in Bangladeshi shipyards every year. The country’s shipbreaking industry provides direct and indirect employment for about 200,000 people.
“On top of this irreparable damage, we also face massive loss of marine life,” says Matin. “Fish are often seen floating up dead in the surrounding sea, and fresh water around the coastal areas of Sitakunda contains many toxic chemicals.”
Formalised in 2006, the industry had by 2012 allowed Bangladesh to recover an estimated 1.5 million tonnes of steel. At the same time, according to the study, thousands of tonnes of toxic substances such as asbestos, lead, waste oil and other chemicals were discharged into the soil and sea.
This reclaimed wooden boat chair masterpiece came from Scott Feen of The Atlantic Workshop. We found it through Unconsumption – one of the most inspiring sites on reuse design on the web.
Photos by Karin Lidbeck Brent
Within his workshop you will find remnants of boats, buildings, factories, barns and mechanical equipment most would toss into a scrap yard. But Scottâ philosophy is simple: find old items and give them new life.
The Chatham location of his workshop lends itself especially well to the uncovering of pieces of old boats and yachts, which Scott uses to create furniture with a nautical theme.
The project was designed by Alejandro D’Acosta and Claudia Turrent, a husband & wife architecture team, based locally in Baja, who are known for their inventive approach to reuse, which includes everything from rammed earth to reclaimed trash. At Vena Cava, the duo salvaged a handful of discarded boats from a nearby port and turned them into vaulted ceilings for the winery’s essential functions.
Horseshoe Crab – one of my favorite animals. Had no idea this was happening. Wish I still didn’t 🙁
A still from the PBS Nature documentary Crash ( PBS )
I don’t know about you, but the idea that every single person in America who has ever had an injection has been protected because we harvest the blood of a forgettable sea creature with a hidden chemical superpower makes me feel a little bit crazy. This scenario is not even sci-fi, it’s postmodern technology.
The only problem is that the companies need a large supply of the blood of live crabs. Horseshoe crabs live on the seafloor, near the shore. When they want to mate, they swim into very shallow water, and horseshoe crab collectors wade along, snatching the crabs out of their habitat.
The Canadian Exporter Breaks in Half 1921 Copyright Columbia River Maritime Museum
Some of the most intriguing lumber we have in stock was never used in construction, and yet still considered salvage timbers. These beams are believed to have been loaded onto a Canadian ship in 1921 that wrecked off the Pacific Coast.
In early 2010 as a beach near the wreck eroded, the shipwreck became exposed and the cargo began washing ashore. The Canadian Exporter was carrying 3 million board feet of lumber plus 200 tons of other cargo, heading from Vancouver, British Columbia to Portland, Oregon and then on to Asia, according to a story in the Seattle Times. Some of the timbers that Crossroads and our sister company, Pacific Northwest Timbers now have in inventory were found by locals and hauled ashore with a tow truck, a few others were discovered just beneath the waters’ surface by a local oyster fisherman.
Timber Cargo of the Canadian Exporter Now at Crossroads Lumber and PNT
Collin Stedman, a ninth grade student at St. Martin’s Episcopal School, who was volunteering with his entire ninth grade class, helps Randy Majoria, an enivironmental quality specialist with Jefferson Parish, line one of the fences with Christmas trees in the marsh near Goose Bayou in Jean Lafitte,LA Friday, January 11, 2008. Recycled Christmas trees are places in the marsh as part of the Jefferson Parish Christmas Tree Marsh Restoration Project to help restore the wetlands.
A “tree” made from old fishing nets attached to a mast that was planted in a leaky old boat. With a borrowed dinky little outboard motor we set out in the dead of night to surprise some early morning surfers on Venice Beach.
Using the existing vessel-shaped space of a six-decades-old dry dock, the Danish National Maritime Museum in Helsingor, Denmark takes visitors on a unique subterranean tour of the areas used to build, maintain and repair ships.
Oracle and Boeing are collaborating to recycle 7,000 pounds of carbon fiber from Oracle’s USA-71 boat. They say this is “a first-of-its-kind effort for what will likely be the largest carbon structure ever recycled,” according to Boeing’s press release.
While carbon fiber has become a popular material used for all kinds of things, bikes, cars, boats, it’s not easy to recycle. Various researchers have been working on it. Now Ellison’s boat will be part of Boeing’s research.