Home / Voices

Second Tibetan railway line planned

By Xu Wei (chinadaily.com.cn)

Updated: 2016-03-09 19:36:15


China's second railway line into the Tibet autonomous region could be completed by 2025, and ecological protection will be a top priority during construction, a senior political adviser from the region said during the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference.

Construction of another railway line linking Lhasa and Chengdu could be completed during the 14th Five Year Plan period (2021-2025), Sonam Dorje, director of the economic, population, resources and environmental affairs committee within the Tibetan regional committee of the CPPCC, said on Monday.

The new railway line will help boost tourism and improve the livelihoods of residents along the line, as a lack of transportation facilities has always hampered the regional development, Sonam said. "It will require a huge investment," he added.

There are many valleys and mountains along the new railway line, requiring the construction of many bridges and tunnels. Construction of the Qinghai-Tibet Railway provided the experience needed to build the new railway line, said Sonam, who has participated in research discussions on the project.

"We have accumulated rich experience in the protection of ecology during the Qinghai-Tibet Railway period. That will be very helpful in the construction of the new railway line as well," said Sonam, who is also a member of the CPPCC National Committee.

Sonam also made a proposal to the CPPCC to speed up the development of new energy resources in Tibet.

"The exploitable deposits of solar power, hydropower, wind power and geothermal power in Tibet are almost one third of the country's total. Yet right now, only one percent of the deposits have been developed," he said.

"We need to develop the clean energy sector into a strategic industry in Tibet, to increase the self-supporting capacity of the region," he said. "The situation in Tibet is that too much emphasis has been placed on the protection of resources, and little has been done to develop them."