China: Three Gorges Dam Prevents Catastrophic Flooding
China’s controversial Three Gorges dam project seems to be fulfilling one of its goals, after helping prevent catastrophic flooding on the Yangtze River.
Much of southern and central China has been suffering flooding after weeks of torrential rain. But when the Three Gorges dam reached its peak on Tuesday, the gates successfully held water in the huge reservoir, while releasing a smaller amount, to avoid it surging down river.
Flooding is common in southern China during the annual rainy season, though this year has been the worst for some areas in decades. Water has flooded cities and villages alike, and heavy rains have caused land and mudslides across the region.
State media reported that more than 700 people have died this year from flooding and 347 people are still missing. Approximately 113 million people have been affected and the direct economic loss has been U.S. $21 billion.