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Ethiopian runner makes protest sign as he crosses line in Rio

Ethiopian runner makes protest sign as he crosses line in Rio | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Feyisa Lilesa crosses his arms as he wins a silver medal - a gesture used by his Oromo people at home to protest against the government.
Seth Dixon's insight:

The Olympics can bring to interesting cultural and political issues to a larger international audience.  The Oromo people in Ethiopia are off our collective radar, but this marathoner made the world pay attention and start to ask questions about a part of the world that rarely gets global attention.  Some other examples of how you can link students' interest in the Olympics to expand their understanding about the world include:

What was your favorite 'teaching moment' from the Olympics?

Tags:  political, conflict, sport.

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Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan sign deal to end Nile dispute

Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan sign deal to end Nile dispute | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Three African leaders sign an initial deal to end a long-running dispute over the sharing of Nile waters and the building of Africa's biggest hydroelectric dam.
Seth Dixon's insight:

85% of the Nile's water comes from the Blue Nile that originates in the Ethiopian highlands--it is the Blue Nile that Ethiopia has been working on damming since 2011.  The Grand Ethiopia Renaissance Dam (GERD) will be located near the border with Sudan (see in Google Maps).  Prior to this trilateral agreement, Egypt and Sudan received the majority of the Nile's waters because of outdated colonial-era treaties that ignored upstream riparian states.  This explains why in the past, Egypt was so adamantly opposed to Ethiopia's plan fearing that their water supply with be threatened.  Today though, the Egyptian President said, "We have chosen cooperation, and to trust one another for the sake of development."  


Tags: Ethiopia, Africasupranationalism, political, development, environment, water, energy, borders.

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Kevin Cournoyer's curator insight, May 6, 2015 7:22 PM

This article discusses the dispute between Egypt and Ethiopia over the construction of a dam that would provide Ethiopia with a larger share of the Nile's water. Egypt is wholly opposed to this dam because it would mean less water for the country, which so desperately needs it. With 95% of the population of Egypt living within 20km of the Nile River, a reduction in the amount of water supplied to these tens of millions could potentially spell slow disaster. At the same time, however, Ethiopia desperately needs water from the Nile in order to provide sustainable energy for its citizens. 

 

The Nile has been a source of life and energy for thousands of years in an oppressively hot, dry place. The ancient Egyptians counted on the Nile to flood every year so that they would have arable land and used the large river to irrigate their farmland. It is almost ironic, therefore, that Egyptians are once again counting on the water of the Nile to help them survive in such a harsh climate. It seems that the Nile is one of those natural geographic features that is pivotal to political, economic, and social wellbeing. It represents the nexus between natural landforms and the political and economic goals of human beings and nations. Dispute over use of the Nile as a natural and life-giving resource is not the first instance of human debate over possession or use of natural geography and it likely won't be the last. 

Adrian Bahan (MNPS)'s curator insight, March 31, 11:57 AM

85% of the Nile's water comes from the Blue Nile that originates in the Ethiopian highlands--it is the Blue Nile that Ethiopia has been working on damming since 2011.  The Grand Ethiopia Renaissance Dam (GERD) will be located near the border with Sudan (see in Google Maps).  Prior to this trilateral agreement, Egypt and Sudan received the majority of the Nile's waters because of outdated colonial-era treaties that ignored upstream riparian states.  This explains why in the past, Egypt was so adamantly opposed to Ethiopia's plan fearing that their water supply with be threatened.  Today though, the Egyptian President said, "We have chosen cooperation, and to trust one another for the sake of development."  


Tags: Ethiopia, Africa, supranationalism, political, development, environment, water, energy, borders.

Mike Busarello's Digital Storybooks's curator insight, April 1, 12:19 AM

85% of the Nile's water comes from the Blue Nile that originates in the Ethiopian highlands--it is the Blue Nile that Ethiopia has been working on damming since 2011.  The Grand Ethiopia Renaissance Dam (GERD) will be located near the border with Sudan (see in Google Maps).  Prior to this trilateral agreement, Egypt and Sudan received the majority of the Nile's waters because of outdated colonial-era treaties that ignored upstream riparian states.  This explains why in the past, Egypt was so adamantly opposed to Ethiopia's plan fearing that their water supply with be threatened.  Today though, the Egyptian President said, "We have chosen cooperation, and to trust one another for the sake of development."  


Tags: Ethiopia, Africa, supranationalism, political, development, environment, water, energy, borders.

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Egypt to 'escalate' Ethiopian dam dispute

Egypt to 'escalate' Ethiopian dam dispute | Geography Education | Scoop.it

While construction of Africa's largest hydroelectric dam continues apace, downstream neighbour Egypt is crying foul.  Egypt's main concern is water security, as the country faces a future of increasing scarcity. Nearly all of Egypt's water comes from the Nile, and its population of 83 million is growing at nearly two percent annually."

Seth Dixon's insight:

85% of the Nile's water comes from the Blue Nile that originates in the Ethiopian highlands--it is the Blue Nile that Ethiopia has been working on damming since 2011.  The Grand Ethiopia Renaissance Dam (GERD) will be located ocated near the border with Sudan (see in Google Maps).  As stated in this BBC article (with a nice 1-minute video clip), Egypt and Sudan currently get the majority of the Nile's waters because of outdated colonial-era treaties that ignored upstream riparian states.  This explains why Egypt is adamantly opposed to Ethiopia's plan and is actively lobbying the international community to stop construction on the dam, fearing their water supply with be threatened.  Oil might be the most economically valuable liquid resource in North Africa, but water is the most critical for human habitation.   


Tags: Ethiopia, Africa, development. environment, water, energy, borders, political.

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Nicole Kearsch's curator insight, October 31, 2014 12:30 AM

This is interesting, and I found it tough to decide what side I want to take.  For Egypt I could see this as being a very real scare.  Ethiopia is building a dam for a resource for power which will cause less water to get to the people of your country.  This is scary considering the Nile is the only source of water.  Ethiopia on the other hand is just pushing through with the project insisting they will work with Egypt on when they fill the reservoir.  They argue that the loss of water to Egypt will not be a huge loss and people will still be able to go about their business as normal.  I think that production of the dam should be paused for the time being and research should be done as to the effects this dam will have on both countries.  With this if the dam is going to cause too many issues, all the time, effort, and money that went into it wouldn't be wasted.

Chris Costa's curator insight, October 26, 2015 2:32 PM

In a complicated geographical issue, both Egypt and Ethiopia have ample reason to oppose the plans of the other concerning the damming of the Blue Nile. The damming of the Nile could prove devastating for Egypt, which draws 85% of its water supply from the river. With an increasing population and issues with water scarcity already abundant, it is clear why Egypt is fearful of the proposed plan, as the ecological effects could be devastating. For Ethiopia, the damming of the Nile could prove incredibly fruitful, allowing the nation to more easily engage in trade and could encourage some serious international investment in the region- a move that would not only benefit Ethiopia, but Egypt as well. It is for that reason that Egypt is willing to compromise on the issue, but until its water supply can be protected and secure, tensions over the dam are going to continue to escalate.

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Improving Mortality Rates In Ethiopia

Improving Mortality Rates In Ethiopia | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"A baby born today in Ethiopia is three times more likely to survive to age 5 than one born in 1990.  This progress isn't a result of expensive international aid or the recruitment of foreign doctors into Ethiopia. Instead, the country has invested in simple, bare-bone clinics scattered around the country, which are run by minimally-educated community health workers."

Seth Dixon's insight:

This NPR podcast shows how local programs that target rural health can have a massive impact on key demographic and development statistics.  This is great news-- infant mortality rates around the world have dropped from 46 deaths/1000 to 35 deaths/1000 in the last 8 years and local programs such as this one have been a major reason why.   


Tags: Ethiopia, Africa, medical, development.

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Tracy Galvin's curator insight, May 5, 2014 2:42 PM

Education makes a huge difference in the health of poor nations. All they needed was to educate a few citizens on the basics of diseases endemic to the region and they have seen significant improvement in the health of the citizens.

Nicole Kearsch's curator insight, November 3, 2014 1:35 PM

This is amazing!  Although Ethiopia still has a long way to go in the medical field they have made major improvements in the last few years.  The building being used as an office is not anything spectacular by any means but it is helping save lives.  Common ailments that used to be the cause of death of young children are now treatable and children are able to live past their fifth birthday.  This is a big deal for the people in Ethiopia.  This is not any expensive program brought in by the United States, but a government run program created in Ethiopia.  Common remedies are given to children as well as vaccines that are carefully documented for who needs what and when by the people that run the facilities.  Although the program is still improving and it may take a long time for it to become top notch, the improvement that has been because of this is stellar for the circumstances.

Lena Minassian's curator insight, April 8, 2015 12:58 PM

Mortality rates have become overwhelmingly high in many countries. Ethiopia has now found simple health remedies to improve these rates. Many of these poor countries do not have numerous resources or even medication to help them when they are sick. Ethiopia used to have one of the highest child mortality rate in the world. one of the statistics given was very alarming and it stated ""If you were a kid born in 1990 [in Ethiopia], you had a 1 in 5 chance of not surviving to your fifth birthday." This is horrific for children who cannot predict where they are born and raised. Since 1990, Ethiopia has improved that rate by 60%. They havented invested a lot of money but have opened basic clinics with community individuals who are minimumally educated on these matters. Many of these workers have gone through a one-year training but nothing fancy. Many of these clinics have even two rooms and no electricity. Many of these children are finally being treated properly for some basic things that shouldn't be taking their lives. There is a long way to go for improvemnet but as long as their is a will to help these children, this country will vastly improve.

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Frankincense production in dramatic decline

Frankincense production in dramatic decline | Geography Education | Scoop.it
It could well be enough to make the Magi turn in their graves.

 

The ecology of frankincense production is not currently sustainable.  A research team from the Netherlands and Ethiopia said their new study had shown numbers of the Boswellia tree which produces the fragrant resin were falling due to fire, grazing and insect attack.  For more on the historical geography of frankincense, see: http://i-cias.com/e.o/frankincense.htm

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Ethiopia tests Sub-Saharan Africa's first light rail system

Ethiopia is due to launch a light rail transit system later this year, the first of its kind in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Seth Dixon's insight:

This is a very encouraging accomplishment; from Lagos to Nairobi, similar projects are now being considered. 


Tags: Ethiopia, Africa, development. transportation, planning, urban.

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Gene Gagne's curator insight, November 4, 2015 4:05 PM

Finally something positive.

Raymond Dolloff's curator insight, December 14, 2015 11:59 PM

As Africa, namely Sub-Saharan Africa, lacks the technology that is required to develop and maintain this type of transportation is a great start. Time shows that if a country is given a decent amount of time to develop something good will come to it. Advances in technology today make it easier for development to happen, but once again it comes down to the ease of access to this technology in order to properly develop this and maintain it at all times.

Patty B's curator insight, February 11, 4:40 PM

The fact that Ethopia just recently opened its first railway of this nature is extremely good news for Ehtopia and the Sub-Saharan region as a whole. It marks economic and industrial progress and brings the region further into the globalized economy and society. The 20th century was one of great inequalities and vast superpowers asserting dominance and becoming extremely wealthy. I think in recent times (like the past decade or two) we have witnessed more “third-world” countries make great strides toward establishing democratic, semi-capitalistic, industrialized, modernized, and prosperous governments. But in another light, I think the news still represents, in a way, the fact that such a great gap really does exist throughout the world between the rich and the poor. This gap not only exists on an individual scale, but as this news shows, between nations as well. This great news for Ethiopia is something that happened in the U.S. a century ago. And the news is certainly good for Ethiopia and the rest of the world, and it is great news for proponents for more equal wealth distribution. But it ultimately does show that there is a long way to go until we figure out how to solve the issue of poverty across the world. 

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Ethiopia's Dam Problems

Ethiopia's Dam Problems | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Ethiopia is three years from completing a dam to control its headwaters, and while Egypt points to colonial-era treaties to claim the water and to stop the project, the question remains as to who own the Blue Nile."

Seth Dixon's insight:

This 7-minute Geography News Network podcast (written by Julie and Seth Dixon) touches on some key geographic concepts.  85% of the Nile's water comes from the Blue Nile that originates in the Ethiopian highlands--it is the Blue Nile that Ethiopia has been working on damming since 2011.  The Grand Ethiopia Renaissance Dam (GERD) will be located  near the border with Sudan.  Egypt is adamantly opposed to Ethiopia's plan and is actively lobbying the international community to stop construction on the dam, fearing their water supply with be threatened. 


Tags: Ethiopia, Africa, development. environment, water, energy, borders, political.

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Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, July 20, 2014 8:00 PM

Option: Inland water 

dilaycock's curator insight, July 21, 2014 9:09 PM

Useful example to illustrate the interactions and tensions between natural resources and political systems.

Kate Buckland's curator insight, July 26, 2014 10:38 PM

At least the Murray-Darling Basin is within one country - even if it covers 4 states!

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Will Ethiopian dam dry up the Nile?

Will Ethiopian dam dry up the Nile? | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Construction of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (known as Gerd) is now about 30% complete.  Once completed, in three years, it will be Africa's largest hydropower dam, standing some 170m (558ft) tall."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Located near the border with Sudan (see in Google Maps), Ethiopia plans to dam the Blue Nile before the water heads to Sudan and eventually into Egypt.  As stated in this BBC article (with a nice 1-minute video clip), Egypt and Sudan currently get the majority of the Nile's waters because of colonial-era treaties and Egypt is opposed to Ethiopia's plan, fearing their water supply with be threatened. 


Tags: Ethiopia, Africa, development. environment, water, environment modify, energy, borders, political.


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Albert Jordan's curator insight, April 1, 2014 3:06 PM

In an area fraught with political instability, non state actors, and rebel groups all too willing to fight for power and the wealth that comes from it - it will be interesting to see how the conflicts shift over time as this dam gets closer to completion. Will Egypt attempt to sabotage it or will they take a more diplomatic approach and try to work with the Ethiopian government diplomatically again?  Perhaps Egypt will whisper in to the ear of Sudan or the various "rebel" groups in the region, considering diplomatic means have apparently failed so far. With Sudan's use of the Blue River also going to be affected by Ethiopia's damming, it will be interesting to see if a cooperation between Egypt and Sudan occurs. Perhaps Ethiopia would like to see a deeper conflict between Sudan and South Sudan, keeping their affected neighbor off balance.

Tracy Galvin's curator insight, April 16, 2014 6:47 PM

It is extremely difficult to divide a river. The Ethiopians will benefit immensely from this project but the Egyptians could lose everything if the Nile dries up. This is going to be a difficult problem to solve.

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 2014 3:45 PM

There is no way the whole Nile river is going to be dried up because of this damn. Ethiopia won't let that happen. To say that the river is going to have the same amount of water in it, thats not going to happen. Obviously the Gerd is going to have a huge impact on the water supply of the Nile but it definitely isn't going to dry up the whole thing!

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The Ethiopian town that's home to the world's greatest runners

The Ethiopian town that's home to the world's greatest runners | Geography Education | Scoop.it
What do Kenenisa Bekele, Tirunesh Dibaba, Derartu Tulu and Fatuma Roba have in common, apart from being Olympic gold medallists?

 

What is it about this place that has produced so many world- class runners?   This is a great profile of the "Town of Runners."

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Seth Dixon's comment, April 12, 2012 10:53 PM
And I was feeling proud of my 7.8 mile run today.
Matt Mallinson's comment, November 5, 2012 2:50 PM
It's amazing to me that some of the world's fastest runners come from such a poor place and a very misunderstood place. Good for them.