China: danger of a catastrophe the world's largest dam on the Yangtze

China: danger of a catastrophe the world's largest dam on the Yangtze

Chongqing : China | Jul 17, 2012 at 7:57 AM PDT
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TwinF Travels: China's Three Gorges Dam Project

If the climate changes caused by torrential rains in China will keep the edges of the reservoir at the Three Gorges Dam, the largest such structure in the world started to slip, with disastrous consequences for the environment and local residents.

Before the effects of increasing rainfall for several years on Monday warned the Chinese Bureau of Geology, Director of the Ministry of Natural Resources Guan Fengjun.

Climate change and the associated increase in rainfall causing severe damage in central and southern parts of China. It was noted already associated with this disturbing phenomenon, such as wet areas in the immediate vicinity of the tank.

Assuming that the rains will continue in the near future, over the next three years you can expect a giant landslides, especially in the western part of Yunnan province (southern China) and in the southern part of Sichuan (in the center of the country) - stressed Guan. That is why we must take action now to prevent a possible catastrophe, or at least partially reduce the consequences - he added.

According to the geologist, already is closely monitoring the weather and as soon as possible to prepare a place of refuge for the population at risk of drowning and flooding.

Heavy rains are a threat also because of the rising water level in the storage reservoir at the dam. Currently, the water level at a height of 175 meters is considered safe, heavy rains may result in a breach of this barrier.

Construction of the Three Gorges Dam on the Yangtze River, the largest dam of the world, started in 1994 and was the most prestigious investment in infrastructure in China. Dam was completed in 2007, the total cost of this project is estimated at over 40 billion dollars. Dam and storage reservoir would serve to electricity generation in the water, and also play a significant role in regulating the water system in China, especially in terms of protection from large floods.

Construction of the dam sparked protests from conservationists and art historians. When creating a reservoir of water, there were 13 cities, 140 villages and 1,350 smaller towns, and with them many famous sights. More than 1.5 million people displaced.

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Three Gorges Dam
Three Gorges Dam / Photo by AFP
amagda is based in London, England, United Kingdom, and is a Reporter on Allvoices.
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