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Three Gorges Dam

Three Gorges Dam with much water in YichangThe Three Gorges Dam located in the Yiling District of Yichang, in Hubei province, China. It is a hydroelectric dam that spans the Yangtze River by the town of Sandouping. It is the world's largest electricity-generating.

The body of Three Gorges Dam was completed in 2006. Except for a ship lift, the originally planned components of the project were completed on October 30, 2008 when the 26th generator in the shore plant began commercial operation. Each generator has a capacity of 700 MW.

Six additional generators in the underground power plant are not expected to become fully operational until 2011. Coupling the dam's 32 main generators with 2 smaller generators (50 MW each) to power the plant itself, the total electric generating capacity of the dam will eventually reach 22.5 GW.

TheThree Gorges Dam produces electricity, increases the river's shipping capacity, and reduces the potential for floods downstream by providing flood storage space. From completion through September 2009 the dam has generated 348.4 TWh of electricity, covering more than one third of its cost.

The Chinese state regards the Three Gorges Dam as an historic engineering, social and economic success, with the design of state of the art large turbines, and a move toward limiting greenhouse gas emissions. However, the dam flooded archaeological and cultural sites and displaced some 1.3 million people, and is causing significant ecological changes, including an increased risk of landslides. The dam has been a controversial topic both in China and abroad.

Advantages of The Three Gorges Dam

However, the Three Gorges Dam has more advantages than disadvantages of environmentmportant, and Three Gorges project will not only produce huge economic benefit, but also play great role in improving the ecological environment of Yangtze River areas..First, flood controlling is an important effect. With a normal storage level at 175m, the effective flood control the capacity reaches 22.15 billion m3, which can control the flood from the upper stream of Chang Jiang River effectively,boosting the level of flood control of the Jin Jiang River’s dykes to occur in a hundred years. Even in case of a rare occurrence of 1000-year flood, mass damages or injuries can still be prevented.

At the same time, social problems such as environmental deterioration and epidemics related to the flood or flood diversion can also be avoided after the foundation of Three Gorges Dam. Thus the project will protect 1.5 million hectare of farmland and towns, and 15 million of people from flood damage at Jianghan Plain and Dongting Lake area. And also the project will raise the reliability of flood control in the mid and lower reach of Yangtze River, relieve the sand silt of Dongting Lake and create favorable conditions for dredge of the lake, and prevention and cure of the schistosomiasis epidemics in the lake area. Second, the dam can generate electric power without environmental pollution.

Compared to the coal-fired power stations with equivalent electricity generation, Three Gorges Dam Power Plant will decrease emission of 100 million tons of CO2, 2 million tons of SO2, 0.37 million tons of nitrogen oxide and a lot of waste water and solid waste. It will bring a great benign influence in improvement of environment, especially preventing acid rain and greenhouse effect in East and Central China.Third,the dam has benefit of ship.The reach of Yi Chang was full of riptides and dangerous shoals in the past.After the reservoir filled with water,the millions ton ships can go to Chong Qing Port spang,which can save time of shipping.Fourth,the dam expedites the development of economy of the reservoir area.The dam’s building creates new jobs for local people,and country is compensating the enterprise of reservoir area.Last, the Three Gorges reservoir, after the project is completed, will improve the weather in this area, be favorable for agriculture, and improve water quality in the mid and lower reach, which will relieve the invasion of saline tide in the river's mouth to East China Sea.

Problems of The Three Gorges Dam

Of course, it must be admitted that the Three Gorges Dam brings many problems to the environment. First, There are forty seven kinds of precious botanic species that are near extinction and among the national-level protecting list in area of Three Gorges reservoir. If the dam filled, water will inundate many kinds of botanic species, and cause unchangeable damages. Second, there are geological threats. The environment of the dam area has charged, so same effects makes geological threats such as erosion, landslide and deformed terrain." The dam was a fully that would trao silt and pollution and dangerously destabilize the brittle hills on its shores and tributaries." Critics have long said( Nov 15, Reuters, by Chris Buckly).Third, the sediment ranks as a crucial difficult issue for reservoir construction worldwide. There will be 530 million tons of sediment coming into the reservoir per year, which may, if not properly dealt with, influence the function of and decrease the life of the reservoir, also impact unfavorably on the navigation of Yangtze River.


Three Gorges Dam Tour

After all, with the most magnificent scenery, the Three Gorges Dam is a top attraction of Yangtze River tour that attracts large numbers of tourists every year!