Three Gorges Dam: World's Largest Dam

Pages: 5 (1772 words) Published: February 12, 2013
Three Gorges Dam
A computer simulated model of how the finished dam is supposed to look like A computer simulated model of how the finished dam is supposed to look like The three Gorges dam is the world’s largest dam with a total length of half a mile and 600 feet high. The construction of this massive dam took over 21 years starting from planning till the finished construction. The dam was built to stop the floorings that occurred and to cut down the greenhouse emissions of Chinas energy production. With t total production of 100 terawatt per year the dam provides 3% of Chinas total energy consume. But this dam had also been a disaster to the environment and the society. But the construction of the dam also had its negative sides, 1.3million people had to be relocated, many archeological artifacts were buried, the construction caused massive landslides, killed hundreds of fish species and changed the environment around it. But the biggest problem is the effect that it had on the water cycle. The three Gorges dam is one of the most discussed topics when talking about the water cycle.

Water storage:
The biggest problem with this project is the 39 trillion kilograms of water that are store on the side of the dam. This causes million kilos of water to evaporate each day. This causes major rain fall. The large amount of rain is causing minor flooding. These floods do not claim as many lives as the major floods but are still enough to destroy fields and to turn smaller cities into flood plain. The floorings cause the farmers to have large difficulties to find fertile land and so to grow their crops and. This is not a huge issuer since there are millions of farmers in china but it has an effect on the people that live near the dam and their income.

The next problem is Chinas government is deforestation the area around the dam, with the trees cut down the rain, caused by the dam, and cannot be absorbed by the trees anymore. This causes erosion. The forests in the region around the dam have decreased from 20 to 10 percent. The forests have kept the soil in place but now this is no longer possible and the water carries way the soil causing landslides. The Chinese government has now acknowledged this problem but it is too late for them to change the current situation and the only possible method is to relocate the people.

A picture showing the construction of the three gorges dam
A picture showing the construction of the three gorges dam
The next problem is the buildup of sediments in by the dam; this causes the water to get large pollution. The missing sediments down the river is also causing a big effect, many of the riverbanks which will normally being reinforced by the sediments are now breaking down due to erosion and due to the lack of trees and plants that would normally keep the sediments in place is now changing the environment. The other side of the river is also a problem, because the buildup of the sediments is a problem to the animals that live near the Yangtze River. Many of the animals need clean water to survive, especially fish. The particles in the water settle in the fish’s gills which stops the breathing. The sediments have nowhere to go but to stay in the river; this causes the Yangtze River to turn into a huge sea of mud.

Impact on the mountains:
The three Gorges which are mountains upstream the river, cause massive relief rainfall and the water caused by this rainfall is eroding the mountains slowly and carrying away the base of the mountain. This causes landslides. And the water can’t be carried away anymore due to the dam. The land slides are often massive ones which carry 20 thousand to 50 thousand cubic meters of stones and dirt which flow in the river and stay there and so pollute the water. This dirt and rocks would be carried down the river into the ocean. But the dam will not allow this processor. And the dirt will settle on the bottom of...

Bibliography: Three-dam74575.jpg. Digital image. 7 Dec. 2011. Web. 19 Feb. 2012. <>.
Continue Reading

Please join StudyMode to read the full document

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Research on the Three Gorges Dam Essay
  • Three Gorges Dam Essay
  • The Gorges Dam Essay
  • Discuss the Economic Impacts of the Three Gorges Dam Essay
  • Essay on Three Gorges Dam: Environmentally Ruining China?
  • The Three Gorges Dam Case Study Essay
  • Impact of Dams Essay
  • The Three Gorges Dam Essay

Become a StudyMode Member

Sign Up - It's Free