Milestone reached in Chinese ‘mega-project’.
A US$97 million tunnel has just been completed in China, measuring 585 meters long by 9 meters in diameter. The four year project is part of a larger “eastern route” tunnel, which will eventually divert 442 million cubic meters of water annually, over a huge distance of 1,467km (911 miles) - as shown on the map above, it covers a huge part of China.
That eastern route is part of an even larger effort - set to be completed in 2050, at a cost of US$79 billion. The ‘South-North Water Transfer Project’ was first proposed by Mao Zedong in 1952, and it took half a century of debate before construction even began.
The project has come under criticism for its huge cost, and the fear that the water it provides could be too expensive for most consumers. It is also likely to waste massive amounts of water through evaporation and pollution.