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Shanghai adapts to sinking land

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail CNTV, February 21, 2012
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Shanghai has long suffered from sinking ground. Worst-hit is the Bund - an old city center and home to the city's signature skyline. It's sunken up to three meters since the early 1990s.

A crack that winds through the ground near the building site of Shanghai Tower in downtown area of the municipality is patched with cement on Monday. 

Fang Zheng, vice chief engineer of Shanghai Institute for Geological Survey, said, "The culprit has been the pumping of ground water to support the city's industrialization. The city began taking preventative measures in 2005, and now the land sinks seven millimeters annually. "

Technology plays a big role in preventing the densely-populated city from being pulled into the ground.

Data gathered by radar satellites make it easy to detect the slightest changes in elevation. And over 300 underground detectors in the city monitor changes to underground water levels. Hundreds of tons of water are injected each day to replenish underground aquifers and keep the city aloft.

Wang Hanmei, staff member of Shanghai Institute for Geological Survey, said, "It is drinking water that meets the national standard, so the aquifers will not be polluted."

Local authorities spend nearly 20 million yuan annually to controlling the problem, and have said they will continue to upgrade underground infrastructure meant to prevent further sinking.


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