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Big Basin Found to Store Yellow River's Mud
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Yellow River Conservancy Commission has found a big "basin" at the river's middle reaches, which is capable of holding 10 billion tons of mud carried by the Yellow River, Xinhua News Agency reported Tuesday.

An expert of the commission under the Ministry of Water Resources said most of the 682-square-kilometer basin is salt alkaloid field, which is suitable to host silt from the river.

The new "basin" is roughly the size of Singapore.

The country's second longest river brings 1.3 billion tons of mud from the Loess Plateau into the lower reaches annually, which blocks the waters course.

The commission will collect thick silt from the river by "advanced technologies and methods," which may improve the basin into fertile land, the expert said.

If this basin project works as planned, the riverbed of the Yellow River in its lower reaches will not climb any higher and people won't need to build higher dams.

The commission has tried to reserve 4 million tons of mud in the basin from 2004.

Li Guoying, the director of the commission, said technologies have matured and they will begin using them in the field soon.

(Shanghai Daily November 3, 2006)

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