Friday, October 07, 2011

THE BIG DITCH

"Speak softly and carry a big stick."

And so it was that Theodore Roosevelt's big ditch was built with the prodding of his big stick and American gunboat diplomacy. An accidental consequence would be the creation of the Republic of Panama.

The canal has dramatically reduced travel time from the Pacific and Atlantic sides and vice versa. Between 37 to 42 ships passes through it everyday and generates almost a billion dollars in revenue for the Panamanian government who have been ceded full control over the canal since 1999.

A series of locks raise or lower passing ships to 85 feet which basically is the difference in elevation between the Pacific and the Atlantic sides.

I was able to take a shot of the Gatun Locks on the Atlantic side as our plane approached Panama City. During the Panama Climate Change Talks, I squeezed in a quick visit of the Miraflores Locks (shown below) with lawyer par excellence Ping Peria.

And so I came, I saw, I clicked.





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