About 100 hydropower stations have been built in the Shennongjia Forestry District in Hubei Province. But despite their potential to bring clean energy to the region, some people are worried that they may actually be doing more harm than good to the environment by cutting off rivers and creating an uninhabitable environment for many plant and fish species.
The dry riverbed in Shennongjia, Hubei Province. [cnhubei.com]
According to Chutian Metropolis Daily, 88 dams in the area have dried the riverbeds, bringing water through tunnels to the lower reaches to generate electricity, which have put severe impact on the water resources, fisheries and local people's lives.
Chen Guangwen, head of local water bureau, said they have taken many measures to protect the forest district, but in order to develop local economy, using clean energy such as hydropower is necessary.
However, among the 90 completed dams, only 29 were approved by local government. There are another 10 stations is also under construction.
Weng Lida, a water expert said building so many water projects is not a sustainable way and the area would take the consequences eventually if they don't stop soon.