China relocates 2.4 million people ahead of floods
( 2003-10-05 11:56) (Xinhua)
China has since 1998 moved 620,000 families, or 2.42 million people, from
their homes in the Yangtze River Valleys to make way for river water.
The year 1998 witnessed the worst floods of the Yangtze River for decades,
which prompted China to take active measures to alleviate flood damage.
In 1998, China started building floodwater diversion projects and turning
farmland into lakes in Hunan, Hubei, Jiangxi and Anhui provinces in the Yangtze
River Valleys, which led to massive re- locations.
As a result, the water surface of the Yangtze's trunk stream and Poyang and
Dongting lakes has been expanded by about 2,900 square kilometers, which helps
increase floodwater storage by 13 billion cubic meters, according to the China
International Committee for Natural Disasters.