China’s biggest lake ecological project-sustained development of ecological and tourist agriculture around Hongze Lake, has lately been started.
As one of China’s five largest freshwater lakes, Hongze Lake is conveniently situated at a point between warm temperate and subtropical zones, a location bringing favorable conditions for agriculture promotion. For its elevated terrain from lakebed rising 4-8 meters higher over eastern plains a natural drop is created making the lake a natural catchment facilitating farmland irrigation, hydropower generation and navigation in northern Jiangsu Province. On top of these, vast top-quality water surface and rich aquatic plants and animal species have turned the lake into one of China's major bases for freshwater fish raising. For its lush water weed the lake has attracted as many as over 200,000 of rare bird species such as red-crested cranes, bustard, swans, gray cranes and egrets during the winter days every year.
The Hongze Lake is at a special site adjoining the coastal areas of Jiangsu and areas of Central and Western China. On the way of the huge project of diverting water from south to north as has been planned, it is going to be at a point at the second entrance of the Huaihe River now under construction. As things stand in the lake area, various opportunities are offered. The local government has mapped out a plan for boosting local economy, tourism in particular.
(People’s Daily 01/04/2001)