Brahmaputra: China plans to divert Brahmaputra waters to its Xinjiang region through 1,000-km long tunnel


BEIJING: China’s top rated management is looking at digging a 1,000-km lengthy tunnel, which if finished would be the world’s longest by a massive margin, to divert the waters of the Brahmaputra from Tibet to its dry Xinjiang region.

The Brahmaputra, known as the Yarlung Tsangpo in China, originates in Tibet and flows downstream into India’s northeast and sustains hundreds of thousands of people in its basin flowing into Bangladesh in advance of meeting the Bay of Bengal.

As soon as the tunnel is accredited, it will most probable impact the drinking water flow in the Brahmaputra, that could result in draughts which have so considerably been uncommon in the river basin, as it is really far more vulnerable to floods. Observers explained storing huge portions of drinking water prior to dispatch through the tunnels could also enhance the pitfalls of flooding downstream.

The plan will involve diverting drinking water from Sangri county in Tibet to the Taklamakan desert in Xinjiang. The South China Morning Submit in Hong Kong quoted Chinese engineers as stating that the plan has been submitted to greater authorities for approval by March 2018.

“An vital element holding up approval for the gigantic venture is the environmental pitfalls concerned in reducing through fragile mountains,” an engineer attached to Chinese authorities explained. An additional element could be the large price concerned.

1 Chinese expert, Wang Wei, who functions for the State Vital Laboratory of Hydraulics and Mountain River Engineering at Sichuan University, estimated that the price would be 1 billion Yuan (approximately $ 150 million) for every km of the tunnel. This would signify an over-all price of all over $150 billion.

China experienced confident India in 2010 that it experienced no ideas of building upstream dams in Zangmu in Tibet right after New Delhi expressed considerations about the exact same. Beijing experienced explained that it was simply building run-of-the-river dam for hydroelectricity and that there was no have to have for it to maintain huge portions of drinking water that could endanger downstream spots in India.

The drinking water diversion venture, if accredited, would signify China’s likely again on its assurances.

Observers below explained China could possibly weigh in in favour of the venture if it serves
its strategic interests+
, which incorporate pressuring India. It has previously dedicated $60 billion for the
China-Pakistan Economic Corridor+
, which, industry experts say, has far more strategic value than economic worthy of for Beijing.

“To my knowledge, no environmental evaluation has been carried out. The nature and scale of the impact remain in the darkish,” Zhou Shiqiao, a researcher at the Chinese Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Tibetan Plateau Investigation in Beijing, instructed TOI.

An additional researcher, Zhang Chuanqing, explained Beijing “would surely go ahead with the venture 1 day”.

“In 5 to 10 decades, the technological innovation will be prepared and the price reasonably priced, and the temptation of the positive aspects will be difficult to resist,” explained Zhang Chuanqing, a researcher at the Chinese Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Rock and Soil Mechanics in Wuhan, who is concerned in building another plan for a 600-km lengthy tunnel in Yunnan.


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