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Artificial Waves Flush Yellow River
Silt into Sea
Artificial waves on the Yellow River rushed into the Bohai Sea early Thursday morning at a speed of 1,880 cubic meters per second. Scientists said the waves have carried vast amounts of riverbed silt into the ocean.

Waves of water were released on the morning of July 4 from the Xiaolangdi Reservoir, in central China's Henan Province, in an unprecedented experiment to rid the river of its siltation problem.

"The experiment was conducted to find the best pressure to send enough water flowing to the lower reaches to flush the silt deposits away," said Li Guoying, director of the Yellow River Water Conservancy Committee.

An inspection of the flushing results and terrain in the lower reaches of the river began on Thursday.

Every year, 1.6 billion tons of silt are swept down to the lower reaches of the flood-prone river, of which 400 million tons are deposited on the riverbed. As a result, the river bed rises by 10 centimeters (4 inches) each year. In some places, banks built to withstand floods are much higher than nearby townships.

(Xinhua News Agency July 12, 2002)

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