A group of senior
officials and experts gathered in central China’s Wuhan City on
September 25 to discuss environmental issues related to the Three Gorges Dam Project. There are many
potentially harmful problems that will affect the ecology and cause
catastrophe unless timely preventive measures are taken, according
The Three Gorges Dam has
served as a barrier against seasonal flooding that annually
threatens the lower reaches of the Yangtze River. But its impact on
the ecology along the river has become noticeable.
According to Huang
Xuebin, an expert from the Ministry of Land and Resources, regular
geological disasters have seriously threatened the lives of the
residents in the Three Gorges Reservoir area. Landslides falling
into the river can create waves dozens of meters high that crash
into surrounding shores, affecting areas dozens of kilometers away.
The water quality of
Yangtze River tributaries has deteriorated after the reservoir
began to store water, along with drinking water resources for
residents in the river valley. This is causing locals to worry.
environment in the reservoir area is fragile, according to Wang
Xiaofeng, Director of the General Office of the Three Gorges Dam
Project Construction Committee under the State Council. Regular
natural disasters, soil erosion and conflicts over land shortages
and irrational development have all contributed to ecological
The local governments suggest that laws governing the management
of the Three Gorges Reservoir and relevant environmental protection
programs be enacted as soon as possible. Experts attending the
meeting also made appeals for long-term disaster prevention and
control mechanisms to be established in the reservoir area, along
with a guarantee of efficient maintenance of the completed treatment programs.
Some facts about the Three Gorges
·The Three Gorges
Project, the world's largest water control facility, is located on
the middle reaches of the Yangtze River.
is expected to take 17 years; completion expected in
estimated cost of 180 billion yuan (US$22.5 billion), the project
will have 26 generators able to generate 84.7 billion kwh of
Gorges Reservoir will inundate 632 square kilometers (395 square
miles) of land.
1.4 million people will be resettled by the project.
Three Gorges Project,
(China.org.cn September 28, 2007)