Yangtze River flooding - Three Gorges Dam

Case Study on the Causes, Effects and Management of river flooding along the Yangtze River in China - LEDC

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  • Created on: 06-04-11 18:46
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River Flooding in an LEDC
River Yangtze, Sandoupingzhen, China
The River Yangtze is 5,600km long ­ third
longest in the world
It's valley is home to 400 million people
Most of the flooding takes part in the lower
parts of the Yangtze in the area of
Annually the river floods and in the 20th century alone over 300,000
people have died because of this
In 1998 the Yangtze floods lasted for two months for two main reasons:
o The monsoon rains lasted a month longer than usual
o El Niño
At its peak, the river was 45 metres deep
240 million people were affected by it
Over 3,000 people died
15 million were made homeless
Cost China $26 billion in damages
Flood defences that were put in place were `swept away like sand
castles' proving the great need for something bigger and stronger.
In 1994 the construction of the Three Gorges Dam was started
It is 186m high and 600 metres wide
It would control large amounts of the effects of flooding in the area as
well as provide over 10% of China's power through hydroelectricity
which could replace some of the old and polluting coal ­ fired power
How it works:
o The water level must reach a certain point and then the dam takes
the water in and then lets it out slowly
o The intake of water turns the turbines and generators which
produce electricity
The dam cost $100 billion to build but it should provide renewable
energy for years to come and prevent costly pay outs in compensation
to those effect by the annual flooding


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