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China's second-largest hydropower project enters construction phase

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340local media reports#http://scnews.newssc.org/system/2007/11/10/010547788.shtml#. The damming of the Jinsha River, as the Yangtze is known in Sichuan and Yunnan, will pave the way for construction of the Xiluodu Power Station (溪洛渡电站), which is scheduled for completion by 2015.

The 50 billion yuan (US$6.74 billion) project will have an installed capacity of 12.6 GW, making it the second-largest hydropower station in China after the 18.2 GW Three Gorges Dam. The Xiluodu project is located on the border of Sichuan and Yunnan.

Yangtze River Three Gorges Project Development Corporation, the state-owned company charged with the Xiluodu project, was ordered by China's State Environmental Protection Agency in 2005 to halt work on the dam until it completed and submitted an environmental impact assessment. Now that the river's flow is blocked, the construction phase of the project is set to begin.

Southwest China's numerous rivers are increasingly being harnessed to quench the country's growing thirst for electricity - much to the chagrin of domestic and international groups concerned with the impact of dams upon the environment, archeological sites and residents displaced by such projects. The Jinsha River is also due to have another hydropower station - Xiangjiaba - begin operations in 2015 with an installed capacity of 6 GW.

Image: Xinhua News

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