|Almost every Chinese knows Li Bai's poem about Lushan Waterfall. "Its torrent dashes down three thousand feet from high," Li wrote. "I wonder if it's the Milky Way that falls from the sky." But a severe drought plaguing the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River has now shrunk the immortal waterfall to a thin stream.
|Located in Jiujiang City, Jiangxi Province, the Lushan Waterfall Scenic Spot has been blighted by the dry spell. By the end of May, the water reserves in eight reservoirs there were down 60% from previous years.
|Many other magnificent natural scenes appreciated by ancient Chinese poets are also disappearing. Dongting Lake in Hunan Province, Tianmen Mountain in Anhui Province, Poyang Lake in Jiangxi Province, and Red Cliff in Hubei Province are all struggling with the worst drought the region has seen in 50 years.
The state news agency Xinhua said Poyang Lake has shrunk to 740 million cubic meters - 87 percent smaller than it was in previous years - with parts of the lakebed becoming a weedy plot of exposed earth.
(China.org.cn June 3, 2011)