A centralized system that prevents local governments from responding fast during emergencies, and rewards them for relief efforts over efforts to prevent calamity, is a recipe for disaster. Analysts weigh in on […]
(July 30, 2013) Fan Xiao, a Chinese geologist and chief engineer of the Regional Geological Survey Team of the Sichuan Geology and Mineral Bureau, says analysis of the recent landslide in Yunnan Province indicates that impoundment of the nearby Xiluodu Dam reservoir most likely caused the event and that more can be expected when the reservoir is filled again. Sharply rising or rapidly falling reservoir water levels pose a threat to geological stability, he says, and can trigger disaster.
(October 31, 2012) “Earthquake Hazards and Large Dams in Western China,” the Probe International report authored by geologist John Jackson, has set China’s academic and industry circles astir. As the debate over Jackson’s findings heats up, the respected Caixin Media magazine, New Century Weekly, looks at both sides of the debate and the specific issues Jackson’s explosive report has raised.
(August 16, 2012) The aftermath of a terrible storm that brought China’s capital to a standstill in July, has left Beijing pockmarked by sinkholes. The city’s ancient, leaking infrastructure and its grossly deficient drainage system could not modify the impacts of the severe deluge but at the heart of the sinkhole scourge is yet another structural failing: Beijing’s dysfunctional and unaccountable civil administration.
(July 27, 2012) The force of a powerful storm that struck Beijing over the weekend has exposed massive flaws in the capital city’s antiquated plumbing infrastructure. Chinese authorities in Beijing now face a firestorm of criticism from citizens demanding to know why their drainage system—famously defined as a city’s conscience by French writer Victor Hugo—was neglected for so long. The weekend flooding has also brought into question the official death toll, which many feel the government is downplaying to offset blame for the city’s poor emergency response to a disaster that could have been more manageable.
(July 6, 2012) Experts fear a proposed dam cascade slated for the Jinsha River, a tributary of the upper Yangtze River, could spell disaster. Reports on dam construction in western China’s seismic hazard zones and the risks of over-damming, released by Probe International earlier this year, are highlighted.
(April 18, 2012) This week, China National Radio reported a total of nearly 100,000 people in the Three Gorges Dam reservoir region may face relocation over the next three to five years due to the threat of natural disasters. Today, China Daily’s U.S. edition reports another 20,000 in Central China’s Hubei province are slated for relocation due to the risk of landslides in the dam area. The relocation process is already underway; schools and hospitals in harm’s way to be evacuated first.