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Preparation for controversial hydraulic project goes on
Updated: 2004-12-05 22:03

Preparatory work for the controversial Shanghutiao Gorge Hydro-power Station, on a major distributary of China's Yangtze River, is going on in "strict accordance with procedure," said an official with the provincial government of southwest China's Yunnan Province.

The official, who spoke anonymously, denied media reports that the project has been officially launched without government approval.

He said that it is unclear when the project, which will also involve a major irrigation facility for the Dianzhong area of Yunnan, will be started.

A feasibility study has been completed by the Zhongnan Inspection, Measuring and Designing Institute, he said.

The Shanghutiao Gorge power station is part of an eight-stage hydraulic power development program scheduled to build up eight power station in the middle-stream area of the Jinsha River.

Yunnan, a popular destination for domestic and international tourists, is widely known for the diversity of its biological, cultural, mineral and hydraulic resources. Critics have expressed fears that the building of large hydropower projects in the area may have catastrophic effects the local environment.

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