(January 24, 2011) The following article is reprinted from Xinhuanet, China’s state news agency.
BEIJING, Jan. 24 (Xinhua) — China has invested 115 billion yuan (17.45 billion U.S. dollars) on the South-to-North Water Diversion Project as of the end of last year, a senior official said Monday.
E Jingping, director of the Office of the South-to-North Water Diversion Project Commission (SNWDPC) of the State Council, said construction on 40 projects began last year, marking a new annual record.
No major accidents happened while constructing the projects last year, E said.
The South-to-North Water Diversion Project is designed to divert water from the water-rich south of China, mainly the Yangtze, the country’s longest river, to the country’s arid northern regions. It will consist of three routes: an eastern, middle and western route. The project started with construction of the eastern route in 2002.
Up until now, both of the eastern and middle routes were already under construction. The western route, meant to replenish the Yellow River with water from the upper reaches of the Yangtze through tunnels in the high mountains of western China, is still in the planning stage.
About 330,000 people in Hubei and Henan Provinces will be relocated before the middle route is completed in 2014.