Home | Zambezi River | Zambezi Seaway Project
Zambezi Seaway Project
Recently worrying reports have popped up in the press that the Zambezi Seaway Scheme, first mooted in the 1950’s by the Portuguese to reduce freight costs for landlocked countries in Southern Africa, is back on the cards.
The proposed Seaway would be 1500kms
long stretching from Victoria Falls in western Zimbabwe to the Indian ocean
in the eastern Mozambique. Promoters of this gigantic scheme - The Zambezi
Seaway Corporation, say it will offer a cheaper, faster and more efficient
route to the ocean, thus boosting local economies.
The current cost of transporting the
vast quantities of goods and minerals to the coast is prohibitive. Therefore
by floating these goods transportation cost would be dramatically reduced
thereby bringing them onto the world market at greatly reduced prices
leading to an industrial boom.
Elephants drink and wallow in the Zambezi River as the sun goes down
Could this really be true?
Reading several reports on the
subject the people behind this corporation are actually considering this.
Have we not made enough mess of our planet earth so far? Have we not learnt
anything from the mistakes we have already made? Do we really need another
industrial boom - have the last industrial booms not done enough damage to
our world? Damage… that many of us are now trying to correct.
The concept is based purely on
economic advantages to the people of the region and the receiving world
economies. There is no doubt that this would stimulate the economies, but at
what cost, it’s all about people people people.
No one seems to have considered the impact such a project will have on the
environment and the abundant wildlife that thrives along the banks of the
Zambezi or in her waters.
It’s not ours to destroy, what right
do we have to take one of the most magnificent spectacles in nature and turn
it into a man made seaway for our own economic gain. We are custodians of
this planet… is this what you would call looking after it?
If anyone, including the people
behind the concept were to take the time to experience this place of
incredible beauty in its full entirety, they would not be able to
contemplate destroying it. This 1500km stretch of water is home to some of
the most outstanding areas of wildlife left on our planet.
Lovely colours can be seen at sunset. These elephant drink from a small tributary, the mighty Zambezi can be seen in the back ground
I respect that every one of us on
this planet has a different point of view. That if you didn’t know the
Zambezi intimately, then you could be forgiven for thinking nothing of
changing it from a place of extraordinary natural beauty into an economic
But for those of us who do know this place, we must put every effort into exposing the worth and beauty of this
place, to the people behind this scheme. Showing that if we destroy it, it
can never be replaced - is that fair to our children, just so that we can
export minerals cheaper. All for the gain of mankind is that really what
it’s about. Does the animal kingdom really have no say in this at all?
A young Elephant wallows at a waterhole at Mana Pools one of the National parks on the banks of the Zambezi
The Zambezi is Africa’s fourth
largest river and flows from north western Zambia through Angola, Namibia,
Botswana, Zimbabwe and finally into the ocean in Mozambique. The river
supports two of southern Africa’s largest Hydro- electrical power stations
one at Kariba on the Zimbabwe - Zambia Border and one at Cabora-Bassa in
The cost is expected to top US$3
billion which hopefully is enough of a deterrent to stop this scheme from
proceeding. The worrying thing is, that some nutcase in a government
department who receives a big enough spin off, along with possible backing
from the Chinese, mighty actually get this project off the ground and
destroy one of the world’s natural havens.
Beautiful Carmine Bee-eaters migrate to breed in the sand cliffs of the Zambezi every year around September time. Thousands of them can be seen - it is a breath taking sight.
Before you can really live. You
need to find something worth dying for!
Tourism is a major income earner for the region. Here tourists are on a canoe trip on the lower Zambezi which normally last 3 to 9 days. It is a true wilderness experience. Can you imagine a ship in the background!!!
you have any point of view we would love to hear it. Just fill in your
comments in the boxes below and we will publish them.
Have your say about the proposed Zambezi Seaway Project
This is a hot topic, with many different view points. Please let us know yours, it might well have an impact....
Read opinions and comments from other readers, just below this form. Please scroll down.
Comments from other visitors...
Click on the headlines below to read the full story.
If you agree or disagree with anything that someone has written. Have your say by posting your own comment. Simply click on the blue link, just below the last comment entered...
I note that the writer does not provide any details as to your concerns and what and who will be detrimentally affected.
Where can I find:
1 - The environmental …
Zambezi waterway project
The western world, developed without interference, when it comes to Africa, there is always environmental restrictions often enforced through western influence. …
Developing a seaway may be very good for the development of the region, but as a sailor on rivers in western europe im wondering what they want the maximum …
Seaway? Interesting topic here.
This article is biased towards those against this project. WHere can I get an article that states the benefits of this project. The disadvantages to me …
I live on the lake shores of lake Kariba. Zimbabwe cannot run a successful ferry service along the length of lake Kariba. Don't worry Africa does not …
We cannot take the interests of commercial organisations only...time and again these interest have proven to serve only themselves
Leave River Alone
need to leave this beautiful river alone. Tourism better than industry.
National Railways Zimbabwe
What ever happened to the rail line from Mutare to Beira shorter cheaper can be double lines and electric make Nyazura the hub jobs jobs enough land for …
edwin zulu -zambia
Thanks , this initiative shall now be a project for Zambia with its neighbors Zimbabwe, Malawi and Mozambique and not foreigners at all. But we shall make …
Migration Routes of Animals/
Sadly migrations pathways of animals would be affected by modern man due to mans selfishness.
The foreign exporters like China and Asia would benefit …
This is a great project. It's fine for tour boats and kayaks to enter the river but not commercial ships. That is absolute hypocrisy. Ecotourism doesn't …
listen to me
I am Zambian so I couldn't even be bothered because you will be ruining the Zimbabwean part of the river all I can say is tourism is a big part of your …
Sadly, greed drives many and in the process destroys much.
Why would you want to ruin a potential of Billions of dollars in eco tourism for a hand full of beans?
Stupidity reigns supreme.
BSc Environmental …
Anybody who has ever been to The Falls will tell you " It's not possible "
What God has blessed us with naturally should never be reframed into ventures that will not benefit the nations and it's people. Let us be humble and not …
MYTH, LEGEND, IMAGINATION OR FACT?
MYTH, LEGEND, IMAGINATION OR FACT?
extracted from http://zimfarmer.itgo.com
Victoria Falls and the opportunity of viewing game …
We never learn from our mistakes.
Is it too late to learn from our mistakes? I, for one, sincerely hope not.
Many people make the mistake of believing that money is the only thing of importance …
What we need in Zimbabwe are qualified environmentalists, there are many with opinion but based on nothing.
We encourage more and more dams for hydro-power …
Oh NO you dont
Having just returned from Vic Falls I am horrified to read of such intentions. This cannot happen because it will impact on too many animal, eco sysytem, …
Who is volunteering to be a peasant and live in a verminous mud hut on a bowl of sorghum porridge a day? Did I mention the toil, disease and early death? …
it's not worth destroying this ecosystem to which no price can be attached.
Promote saving wildlife and land
It is clear that none of those commenting will ever raise funds to dredge the river, stop flooding, save wildlife and there is no aid to undettake this …
What in the world does Zimbabwe have, ANYWHERE, along the length of the Zambezi that could come anywhere near justifying the wanton destruction that would …
We have to stop this even being spoken about! What a disgrace.
WE cannot let this happen. To destroy such a wonderful area for commerce is unforgivable. …
What is required is enviromentalists with common sense
At the moment the zambezi floods, environmentalists dont seem to notice, flora and animal life …
I think it is a great idea
I think it is a great idea they should start drilling as soon as possible because as rich as the area is with wildlife but still it is still underdeveloped …
please leave this river alone let it be freee adding boats will kill the wildlife please leave this river ALONE DO NOT HURT OR DO ANYTHING TO IT!!!!!!!!!!!!! …
Rita, Zambezi Fan!
And what about the Lozi people? Barotseland. They come before shipping! Hopefully it will be cursed. I am soooo angry at this!!!
Please leave this river alone
Please leave this river alone!!!! Can Wal-Mart and others find another way. Why must you destroy everything for the almighty dollar? Don't you have enough …
Have the egg heads who proposed this scheme actually looked at the devastation we as man have caused around the world. Please respect the rights of animals …
After spending most of my adult life in Rhodesia and then Zimbabwe I know this would be an appalling catastrophe.
Apart from anything else the countries …
this is the last straw they have destroyed to great countries and now the zambezi
of course this sea way should go ahead, just like all the big engineering projects of last 200 years in the uk europe and usa, made these regions better …
I have only just found out about this proposed project and I am shocked. I know Musi-oa-Tunya well, having visited the falls and the surrounding area several …
Nyami Nyami will wait.
The dam wall of Lake Kariba is in pretty sad condition, and requires continuous maintenance to stop seepage and slippage. In the inevitable event of rupture …
Ron Campbell - Campbells Biltong
As a Rhodesian Born, I was so lucky to have been on Operation Noah - Kariba with my Dad and so many others saving those beautiful Beasts from the rising …
Mozambique to Ship Coal on Zambezi
Mozambique will overcome a shipping bottleneck to export its vast coal deposits by finding ways for barges to navigate the Zambezi River, the transport …
this idea is stupid
If we keep polluting water with boats and our transport means we will run out and this will disturb the many animals that depend on it for survival.
My blood chills...
As and addendum to my previous note...I have just visited the Zambezi Seaway Project website and I was shocked beyond belief at what I read there.
What would you expect from an engineer?
An engineer from Leeds? I wonder if Roger has a vested interest in this project? I wonder if he's already involved in the planning which would mean potentially …
Yes I support the Zambezi Seaway Project
I am in support of the Zambezi Seaway Project. It is not very different from the many canals that were constructed in England during the industrial revolution. …
Loss of Tourism
I can't believe people are even considering this! As you have pointed out under the last picture of the canoes and the buffalo-
Tourism is a major …
Click here to write your own.
THE VIC FALLS BUSH TELEGRAPH
our Bi-Monthly E-Newsletter
Each issue has a destination update, loads of information about conservation and wildlife, specials offers, traveller tips, community projects, website highlights and tons more...
Find out more about our Bush Telegraph
"Your newsletter keeps me informed about new and old and is the best I've seen in a long while - informative, not commercial, just plain perfect!"
Don't worry. Your e-mail address is totally secure. I promise to use it
only to send you The Vic Falls Bush Telegraph.
Return from Zambezi Seaway to our home page