The construction of the highly controversial Belo Monte hydroelectric plant is “irreversible”. So says Brazil’s energy minister Edison Lobao.

He was also quoted as saying by the Agence France Presse that the project will provide the country with “many advantages”.

The 11 300 MW Belo Monte, which once completed will be the third largest hydroelectric dam in the world, has received fierce opposition from local Amazonian communities, as well as international environmental groups.

Despite protests the need to meet Brazil’s growing energy demands has been the main driver for the going ahead with the project.

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