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Lake Profile


General Information

Description Turcurui is an Amazonian reservoir created to produce hydro-electricity. It was the first large-scale hydroelectricity project implemented in the Brazilian Amazon tropical rainforest. The main objective of the first phase of the Tucurui project was to provide energy and facilitate navigation between the low and middle Tocantins River.
Country Brazil
Latitude -4° 0' 0" (-4.0000)
Longitude -49° 40' 0" (-49.6667)
River Basin Amazon


 Tucurui Reservoir global index map (LakeNet Explorer)
 Tucurui Reservoir locator map
 Lake Basin Management Initiative (LakeNet Explorer)

Physical Characteristics

Description The reservoir has a complex dendritic pattern and has inundated a vast area of tropical rainforest. The power construction plant was started in 1975 and operation began in 1984. By the final stage of implementation, the power plant will privde hydroelectricity for the states of Para, Marranhao and Tocantins.
Volume 45.50 km3
Surface Area 2,875.00 km2
Depth Mean depth: 19.0 m
Maximum depth: 75.0 m
Residence Time 1.7 years
Age 0 - 10,000 years before present
Origin Human Made
Type Fresh
Catchment Catchment size: 803,250.00 km2
Catchment/surface area ratio: 279:1


Economic Value Positive Aspects of Reservoir Construction: energy production, sources of water supply, new recreation and tourism opportunities, enhanced aquaculture and fisheries, navigation, increased irrigation potential, flood control and new economic alternatives.
Major Cities

Watershed Management

Watershed Action Plan In development
Issues The multiple uses of reservoirs, combined with biogeophysical and social characteristics, produce many complexities, conflicts and difficulties. Innovative solutions and new procedures are needed for adequate management (Tundisi 2003). Three main impacts of changes in biota in surrounding areas are changes in fish fauna, loss of tropical rainforest, destruction or displacement of terrestrial fauna and the growth of macrophytes and associated flora and fauna.
Other Issues Aquaculture
Biodiversity Conservation
Lake Levels (water quantity)
Nutrient pollution
Watershed habitat alteration
Monitoring Monitoring is conducted by ElectroNorte (a hydropower company).
Monitoring Programs In-Lake
Water Quality
Biological Resources and Habitats
Lake Use

Biodiversity Conservation

Species of Concern

LakeNet Programs

World Lake Basin Management Initiative
LBMI Regional Experience Sharing and Review Workshop for Europe, Central Asia & the Americas


Managing Lake Basins for Sustainable Use - Lake Basin Management Initiative Final Report (PDF)  Project Report. Final. English. 2/27/2006.
Tucurui Reservoir  (PDF) Experience Brief. Final. Tundisi et al. 2/27/2006.


Brazilian National Resources Policy: Law No. 9433, Jan. 1997.
ILEC Database
Tocatins River Basin Map and Information
WCD: Tucurui/Tocantins River Basin


4/23/2004 - Towards a Lake Basin Management Initiative
5/22/2003 - Brazilian endangered species now number 395
3/18/1999 - WCD To Study Brazil's Tucurui Dam and Amazon/Tocantins River Basin

Additional Data Sources

Birkett, C., and I. Mason. 1995. A new global lakes database for remote sensing programme studying climatically sensitive large lakes. Journal of Great Lakes Research, 21 (3) 307-318.
International Lake Environment Committee, the United Nations Environment Program and Environment Agency, Government of Japan. 1997. World Lakes Database.

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