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Fresh Water Arrives in Pearl River Delta

The Guangdong water authority had urged reservoirs and water plants in the Pearl River estuary to store fresh water during the week after water from neighboring provinces flowed into the province.


The water flow in the Sixianjiao River, which joins the Xijiang and Beijaing rivers in Sanshui City, had reached 2,500 cubic meters per second Saturday, 800 cubic meters per second more than Friday, an observatory station said.


"It is the best chance for Pearl River Delta cities to store fresh water and combat marine tides," said Zhou Rifang of the Guangdong Water Resources Department on Saturday. The water would reach Zhongshan and Zhuhai cities Monday after merging with the Sixiangjiao River.


Zhou said the cities should start to store fresh water when the salt content fell to 250 milligrams per liter.


The marine tide, which is now plaguing Zhongshan and Zhuhai cities, is expected to recede five to 10 kilometers as the fresh water flows down stream.


Hydrological statistics shows Guangzhou, Zhuhai and Zhongshang cities will be able to store around 31 million cubic fresh water in the coming days.


Zhongshan City had strengthening monitoring of sewage plants along the Pearl River, forbidding them from discharging polluted water into the river and would mobilize all reservoirs, water plants and water storages to store more water in the next two weeks.


The Tianshengqiao Reservoir in the upper reaches of the Xijiang River in Guizhou Province started releasing water two weeks ago and the Feilaixia Reservoir on the upper reaches of the Beijiang River, a tributary of the Pearl River, started releasing water Thursday to help Guangdong overcome marine tides and drought.


Around 700 million cubic meters water will be used to alleviate the drought.

(Shenzhen Daily January 31, 2005)

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