The students of the Egypt miniterm visit the Aswan High Dam, one of the largest earth dams in the world (photo shows downstream). Since its inception, the dam has been, and still is, very controversial. Although it spared Egypt the hazard of the annual flood, regulated the water flow to allow year-round irrigation and navigation of the River Nile, and is presently generating tremendous amount of hydropower, it resulted in considerable environmental side effects. The agriculture land lost a significant source of nutrients that came annually with the flood in the form of deposited mud and silt. The Delta of the Nile is also eroding and its shore is receding due to lower rates of deposits and continuous attack from rising seawater. The students study these effects on the ecosystem and the social fabric of the region.
New Zealand Mini-term
Union’s 3-week miniterm in New Zealand involves the study of energy and the environment in New Zealand. In New Zealand, nearly three-quarters of the nation’s electric power is generated from renewable sources, primarily hydro, geothermal and wind. The NZ miniterm counts toward the majors and minors in Environmental Science and Environmental Policy.