Lake Turkana near Loiyangalani, Kenya, is seen on May 20. The fishermen and herders eking out an existence on the shores of the majestic lake risk having their way of life destroyed by a giant dam under construction in Ethiopia, their neighbor to the north. Glittering jade under the scorching sun, Lake Turkana is a fragile jewel in an arid environment already hit by global warming. At 250km long by 60km wide at its largest point, it is the world’s biggest desert lake. At 243m tall, the Gibe III dam is tipped to create a reservoir of water that stretches for 151km, becoming Africa’s most powerful hydroelectric plant and the fourth-most productive in the world. UNESCO has condemned the Gibe III project and the World Bank and the African Development Bank have refused to support it because of concerns about its long-term environmental, social and economic impact.Jun 10, 2012

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Photo: AFP

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