Poyang Lake and the Three Gorges Dam

poyang_lakebedChina’s largest fresh water lake, the Poyang , recently – if reluctantly – gave up a 400 year old archeological treasure.¬† The remnants of a granite bridge from the Ming Dynasty¬† emerged as the lake’s water levels receded to historic lows.

The lake, which has covered as many as 1,740 square miles, has been reduced to less than one-third its original size due to persistent drought conditions and the impact of the Three Gorges Dam project.

The combined stresses of the drought and the dams alteration of river flow is threatening the plankton, fish, and the way of life of local residents who derive their income by fishing these waters – most for many generations.

The situation reached a crisis point in 2012 which required the Chinese government to air-drop millet, maize, and shrimp over Poyang Lake to feed wildlife which were at risk due to the drought conditions.

According to the People’s Government of Jiangxi Province, the conditions have exposed much of Poyang’s lake bed and is challenging the viability of the ecosystem.

In human terms, the decimated income streams are made worse by water shortages affecting the region.







China Focus: Heat, drought, flooding: severe weather tests China

china_droughtBEIJING – Areas across China have been tested by extreme weather, including heat, drought and floods.

After sweating through the hottest July on record, Shanghai upgraded its daily temperature alert from orange to red, the highest on the three-tiered color coded heat alert system on Tuesday, with a high of 40 degrees Celsius.

Tuesday also marked the fourth hot day in August for Shanghai, which saw a record-high temperature of 40.6 degrees Celsius on Friday.

The previous record was set in 1934, when a temperature of 40.2 degrees Celsius was recorded.

Shanghai’s municipal government has requested that all companies and units ensure safe working conditions in the severe heat, especially for those working outdoors.

China’s largest algal bloom turns the Yellow Sea green

algal_bloomThe largest algal bloom ever recorded in China has turned the Yellow Sea green and may be related to pollution from agriculture and industry.

Officials in the city of Qingdao had used bulldozers to remove 7,335 tonnes of the growth from beaches according to the Xinhua news agency.

The phenomenon has become an annual occurrence in the region over the past six summers. This year’s incident has swathed 28,900 sq km (11,158 sq miles), twice as much as the previous biggest bloom in 2008.

Source: The Guardian | Read the entire Article >>