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Diversion water eases Beijing’s water shortage

Reporter: Han Bin 丨 CCTV.com

12-28-2014 00:31 BJT

Water through the South-to-North diversion project has arrived in Beijing on Saturday. The city will receive some 1 billion cubic meters of water each year. China says the newly created network of canals and pipes will help re-allocate water resources, and alleviate the severe shortage in the thirsty north. Our reporter Han Bin went to the ceremony to welcome the new flow, and files this report.

Expectations for more fresh water from the south. Some relief for a thirsty Beijing as the South-to-North Water Diversion Project starts pumping supplies. The government hopes it will turn around the water shortage problem in the capital.

"We will carefully utilize and manage the precious water form the south, and give Beijing residents safe and high quality drinking water. We will also strengthen education on water conservation," said Beijing mayor Wang Anshun.

The Danjiangkou reservoir is the water source for the project. Its dikes have been raised and expanded to increase its capacity.

Some ten billion cubic meters of water will be diverted each year. That equals some 3.8 million Olympic-sized swimming pools.

This newly-built Tuancheng Reservoir in western Beijing is the final destination. Beneath the winter ice, is the water that’s travelled some 14 hundred kilometers.

Then, it will all flow through various water treatment facilities before reaching residential homes. The whole journey takes about half a month.

"The diversion water will be mixed with Beijing’s water. They will undergo the same treatment before being put into use. The final ration will be decided by the actual amount flowing to the city," said Guo Qiang, senior engineer of Beijing No. 9 Water Treatment company.

Beijing’s water troubles is worsening. The government is pressing ahead with one of the world’s biggest engineering feats to take the water northwards. But it’s been calculated that the diversion water can only compensate for one third of the city’s needs. It can only be used as a stopgap to supply the most needy. It’s widely understood that the capital must find other solutions, and soon.

Now the water is coming to Beijing, bringing new hope for its development. After so many years and so much work to achieve it, people start to understand that while diversion from the south sounds like a simple solution, the issue is much more complicated than just easing the water shortage.

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