We’ve already seen the longest dams in the world and now it is time for the tallest. While China is the champions of dam building this list of ten takes us all over the world. While you might argue the economic value of dams there is at least some aesthetic value to be gained from them…
The Top 10 Tallest Dams in the World and Where to Find Them
10 – Tehri Dam in India – Total Height: 260.5 m (855 ft)
This multi-purpose embankment dam is the highest dam in India and is owned by THDC India Ltd. Believe it or not, this dam is still being built and it not supposed to be finished until May 2018!
9 – Manuel Moreno Torres Dam in Mexico – Total Height: 261 m (856 ft)
This embankment dam and hydroelectric power station is located on the Grijalva River and was first operational way back in 1980, but work first started on it in 1974!
8 – Nuozhadu Dam in China – Total Height: 261.5 m (858 ft)
This impressive dam only took 8 years to build as supports a power station with nine generators. While power was a focus of this dam flood control for the valley floor below was another.
7 – Vajont Dam in Italy – Total Height: 261.6 m (858 ft)
This impressive dam was first conceived in the 1920 but work on it wasn’t started until 1957. Then in 1960 when it was almost finished it was at the time the worlds tallest dam and stayed so for quite a while.
6 – Enguri Dam in Georgia – Total Height: 271.5 m (891 ft)
This hydroelectric dam located on the Enguri River in Georgia is the world’s second highest concrete arch dam. Work started on it in 1961 and by 1978 it was all but finished, forgoing a few finishing touches.
5 – Grande Dixence Dam in Switzerland – Total Height: 285 m (935 ft)
This is the and the tallest dam in Europe and the tallest gravity dam in the world (a dam designed to hold back water by primarily utilising the weight of the material alone to resist the horizontal pressure of the water pushing against it).
4 – Xiluodu Dam in China – Total Height: 285.5 m (937 ft)
This arch dam located on the Jinsha River is a hydroelectric power station that can generate a capacity of 13,860 MW! While it is also used for flood and silt control the power generation is its main focus.
3 – Xiaowan Dam in China – Total Height: 292 m (958 ft)
This hydroelectric power generation dam is the second highest arch dam in the world and the third largest hydroelectric power station in the whole of China which is pretty impressive.
2 – Nurek Dam in Tajikistan – Total Height: 300 m (980 ft)
This earth-fill embankment dam located on the Vakhsh River is mostly used for hydroelectric power generation and has been churning out power since 1972 which is 45 years ago at the time of writing this!
1 – Jinping-I Dam in China – Total Height: 305 m (1,001 ft)
This hydropower dam located on the Yalong River has been in planning for decades and was first proposed in the 1960’s! But at the time earthquake measures and resistance were practically zero and finally in 2005 work started on it until its completion in 2013.