CHONGQING • The Yangtze River’s water level in Chongqing municipality exceeded a historical high yesterday morning, posing an unprecedented threat to the metropolis in south-west China.
Around 8am yesterday, the water level at the Cuntan hydrologic station in Chongqing reached 191.55m – 14cm higher than the record in 1981 – and was still rising.
Chongqing, located in the upper reaches of China’s biggest river, upgraded its flood-control response to Level I on Tuesday, the highest rung in the country’s four-tier emergency response system for floods.
At least 250,000 Chongqing residents have been relocated to safe places.
According to the Chongqing Emergency Response Bureau, the water level at Cuntan was higher than the devastating flood which left 1.5 million people homeless in 1981.
More than 8,660 sq km of arable land was flooded.
The direct economic loss caused by the floods was about two billion yuan.
Since Monday, Chongqing, which is located in the upper Yangtze watershed, has been hit by heavy flooding for the fifth time this year due to heavy downpours in the upper Yangtze region.
Meanwhile, in Hubei province – Chongqing’s eastern neighbour-the authorities warned that the Three Gorges reservoir in the province would see the most severe round of floods since it started to hold water in 2003.
According to a forecast by the Changjiang Water Resources Commission of the Ministry of Water Resources, the inbound flow of water is expected to reach more than 74,000 cubic m per second after continuous heavy rain battered the upper reaches of the Yangtze River.
The river flows for 6,300km from glaciers in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau through Chongqing, and then to Wuhan in Hubei province and Nanjing in Jiangsu province, before reaching the East China Sea at Shanghai.
The Three Gorges project is a multi-functional water-control system consisting of a 2,309m-long and 185m-high dam, a five-tier ship lock on the north and south, and 34 turbo-generators with a combined generating capacity of 22.5 million kilowatts.
The Chinese government has earmarked 460 million yuan (S$91 million) for flood relief in the Sichuan, Shaanxi, Gansu and Chongqing regions, the Ministry of Emergency Management said on Wednesday. The funds would be used for flood control, emergency rescue and post-disaster reconstruction in the affected areas.
The Chinese government has earmarked 460 million yuan (S$91 million) for flood relief in the Sichuan, Shaanxi, Gansu and Chongqing regions, said the Ministry of Emergency Management on Wednesday.
The funds would be used for flood control, emergency rescue and post-disaster reconstruction in the affected areas.
The ministry said it has sent a team of 500 disaster-relief professionals to Sichuan to aid in local flood control and emergency rescue work.
XINHUA, CHINA DAILY/ASIA NEWS NETWORK