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Official: Water supply shortage in Beijing to be solved by 2010
( 2003-10-22 09:52) (Xinhua)

Beijing will focus efforts on developing local water resources and diverting water from elsewhere to ease its shortage of water supply, and will ultimately solve the severe problem by 2010, said Bi Xiaogang, vice director of the Beijing municipal water resources bureau, on Tuesday.

A project to develop water resources at Huairou on Beijing's outskirts has been completed and begun to supply 330,000 cubic meters of water to Beijing. Construction on a similar project at Pinggu, also on the outskirts, is expected to kick off at the end of October and to begin operation in July 2004.

The two projects are expected to supply a combined 240 million cubic meters of water to Beijing annually, said Bi.

By 2007, 200 million to 300 million cubic meters of water will be diverted from neighboring Hebei Province to Beijing.

In addition, Beijing could use water diverted from the Yellow River by 2008 and that from the Yangtze River by 2010.

Beijing has been facing a severe shortage of water supply, a situation which has deteriorated with five consecutive years of drought since 1999.

There are now only 4.1 billion cubic meters of water available for use by local residents, with volume available for per capita less than 300 cubic meters.

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