Drought-hit China to spend $9 bn on reservoirsBy IANS
Wednesday, February 23, 2011
BEIJING - China will spend nearly 63 billion yuan ($9.3 billion) on more than 45,000 small reservoirs across the country as part of its efforts to tackle drought and flooding.
By 2012, a total of 24.4 billion yuan will be spent on repairing 5,400 small reservoirs having capacity between 1 million cubic metres and 10 million cubic metres, the government said Tuesday after a cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Wen Jiabao.
Another 15,900 reservoirs with a capacity of more than 200,000 cubic metres will be consolidated by 2013 with an investment of around 38 billion yuan, China Daily reported Wednesday.
The remaining 25,000 reservoirs will be improved with funding from local governments before the end of 2015, the government said in a statement.
The spending plan is part of the country’s efforts to reinforce water conservation initiatives and combat natural disasters, such as floods and droughts.
China has been suffering from a severe drought since October with more than 6 million hectares of farmland affected in the country’s eight wheat producing provinces.
More than 60 percent of the country’s small and medium-sized rivers do not meet national flood control standards and over 32,000 small reservoirs are flawed, according to the ministry of water resources.