The Kariba Dam lies on the Zambezi River, straddling the border between Zimbabwe and Zambia, and is the world’s largest manmade reservoir by capacity. It is aging, raising grave concerns such as the possibility of chemical reactions occurring, as well as seepages and cracks on its wall forming. The dam is also vulnerable to earthquakes and heavy flooding from upstream waters into the plunge pool.
The dam was built in 1955 by Italian company Impresit, subsequently absorbed by Salini Impregilo, responsible for building the Gibe III dam threatening thousands of indigenous Ethiopians and Kenyans. The Kariba Dam, opened in 1959, is 579 metres wide and 128 high and holds back over 189 billion tonnes of water. It lies 1,300 kilometres upstream from the Indian Ocean.