‘We’ve been looking forward to this report for a long time,’ says environmental journalist Wang Yongchen. ‘Obviously it shows that the Chinese government is making this problem a priority. Otherwise they wouldn’t have published such a big figure of loss.’
(August 2, 2006) In the Nu River valley in southwest China, exploration work is under way for a string of hydroelectric dams. Wang Yongchen visited the region to hear what local people have to say about the controversial project.
‘We are wondering which part of the [Nu River EIA] report constitutes a state secret,’ said Wang Yongchen of the Beijing-based Green Earth Volunteers. She said officials should explain why they refused to make public the project’s impacts.
(March 4, 2002) “We are not blindly opposed to dams,” says activist Wang Yongchen. She just wants a fair decision-making process on projects.
(October 17, 2000) Journalist and environmental activist Wang Yongchen says local authorities in the Nu River region in Yunnan province covered up hydropower construction sites during a visit to the area by a delegation from UNESCO.
Geologists predict more frequent catastrophes in China’s Three Gorges Dam region, after landslides wipe out a hydropower plant. Fan Xiao and Yang Yong, the authors of several reports for Probe International, speak to thethirdpole.net about a disaster-prone region made more perilous by intensive hydropower development and call for new risk assessments to be carried out.
“Why do earthquakes keep happening in that area?” In the wake of China’s 6.1 magnitude quake in Yunnan Province and a number of smaller quakes in the region, questions are once again being asked about the country’s rush to build big dams in its southwestern mountains, an area already vulnerable to seismic hazard.
China is so bad at conservation that it had to launch the most impressive water-pipeline project ever
(March 17, 2014) Reporter Lily Kuo takes an in-depth look at China’s South-to-North Water Diversion project — the world’s largest water diversion conceived originally by Mao Zedong as a way to relieve North China’s dwindling water resources by “borrowing” from the south of the country. But not even the project’s leaders are pretending the mammoth, ultra-complex, $80-billion scheme will solve China’s water problem. Moreover, it has already created extra problems. Kuo concludes the project is another example of an engineer-dominated government’s fondness for huge-scale vanity projects with a particular weakness for mega-water works. No wonder. Without the man-made institutions — a robust regulatory regime and the rule of law — the Chinese government is bereft of tools to induce the efficient use (and conservation) of water. And so it builds canals and moves water from one watershed to another, creating havoc and perpetuating the problem of China’s crippling water crisis.
(July 25, 2013) Wu Dengming, praised as “China’s green hero” for his tireless dedication to protecting the environment, passed away this month, aged 73. He is remembered here by those who knew and admired him — even those commercial interests he challenged — as a remarkable and devoted advocate to the end.
(September 15, 2011) In this installment of Weibo Watch: hundreds of rivers and dams dry up, Poyang Lake continues to shrink, Beijing Zoo’s new amusement park draws an angry response, and complaints about mining in Tibetan culture’s holy mountains fall on deaf ears.
(September 2, 2011) Weibo Watch: Issue 3 looks at China’s Eco-Water Tours; industrial stink, dangerous dams and drains that are completely fake.
(July 18, 2011) In a remarkably candid piece, the Communist Party mouthpiece, Global Times, quotes critics saying there isn’t enough water in China’s rivers to divert north under the government’s South-North Water Transfer scheme.
(February 25, 2011) French journalist Claude Arpi writes that the Chinese dam lobby is using global warming to ram through catastrophic dam projects.
(February 10, 2011) Global Times recounts the dangers of dam building that ecologists have been warning about for years.
(November 24, 2010) Construction of a large-scale dam in Tibet is prompting familiar fears downstream on the Brahmaputra. Joydeep Gupta reports on India’s concerns.