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Why is everyone picking at me?
Because of your nonsense! The Dam has been talked about since 1919, but this real dam was decided in 1992. I quote Wikipedia for the many facts on this huge project:
The Three Gorges Dam (Simplified Chinese: 三峡大坝; Traditional Chinese: 三峽大壩; Pinyin: Sānxiá Dàbà) (30.827° N 111.000° E) spans the Yangtze River at Sandouping, Yichang, Hubei province, China. Construction began in 1993. It is the largest hydroelectric dam in the world, more than five times the size of the Hoover Dam. The reservoir began filling on June 1, 2003, and will occupy the present position of the scenic Three Gorges area, between the cities of Yichang, Hubei; and Fuling, Chongqing Municipality. Structural work was finished on May 20, 2006, nine months ahead of schedule. However, several generators still have to be installed; the dam is expected to become fully operational in 2008.
As with many dams, there is controversy over the costs and benefits of this project. Proponents point to the economic benefits from flood control and hydroelectric power. Opposition is mainly due to concerns about the future of over a million people who will be displaced by the rising waters, the loss of many valuable archaeological and cultural sites, as well as the effects on the environment.
1993-1997: The Yangtze River was diverted after four years in November 1997
1998-2003: The first group of generators began to generate power in 2003, and a permanent ship lock opened for navigation the same year.
2004-2008: The entire project is to be completed by 2009, when all 26 generators (with a combined generating capacity of 18.2 GW) will be able to generate 84.7 TWh of electricity annually, about one-thirtieth of the nation's electricity consumption.
Proposal and development of project
Sun Yat-sen first proposed building a dam on the Yangtze River in 1919 for power generation purposes and the National Defense Planning Commission under the Kuomintang made the first survey of the proposed site in 1932, but the idea was shelved due to unfavorable political and economic conditions. Major floods resurrected the idea and the PRC government adopted it in 1954 for flood control.
Vice Minister of Electric Power Li Rui initially argued that the dam should be multipurpose, that smaller dams should be built first until China could afford such a costly project, and that construction should proceed in stages to allow time to solve technical problems.
Later, Li Rui concluded that the dam should not be built at all since it would be too costly, flood many cities and fertile farmland, subject the middle and lower reaches of the river to catastrophic flooding during construction, and would not contribute much to shipping. Sichuan province officials also objected to the construction since Sichuan, located upstream, would shoulder most of the costs while downstream Hubei province would receive most of the benefits.
Lin Yishan, head of the Yangtze Valley Planning Office, who was in charge of the project, favored the dam construction, however. His optimism about resolving technical problems was further encouraged in 1958 by the favorable political climate and the support from the late chairman Mao Zedong, who wanted China to have the largest hydroelectric dam in the world. Criticisms were suppressed. But depression resulted from the disastrous Great Leap Forward and ended the preparation work in 1960.
The idea resurfaced in 1963 as part of the new policies to build a "third front" of industry in southwest China. But the Cultural Revolution erupted in 1966, and in 1969 the fear that the dam would be sabotaged by the Soviet Union, now an enemy, resulted in a construction delay. In 1970, work was resumed on Gezhouba, a smaller dam downstream, but it soon ran into severe technical problems and cost overruns that seemed likely to plague the Three Gorges Dam on an even larger scale.
The economic reforms introduced in 1978 underlined the need for more electric power to supply a growing industrial base, so the State Council approved the construction in 1979. A feasibility study was conducted in 1982 to 1983 to appease the increasing number of critics, who complained that the project did not adequately address technical, social, or environmental issues. Further feasibility studies were then conducted from 1985 to 1988 by Canadian International Project Managers Yangtze Joint Venture, a consortium of five Canadian engineering firms.
Leaders from Chongqing also demanded suddenly that the dam height be raised so substantially that it would cripple the project and free them from bearing the brunt of the costs. The new height and the demand for a more reliable study with the use of international standards resulted in a new feasibility study in 1986.
Ecologist Hou Xueyu was among the few who refused to sign the environmental report, claiming that it falsely overstated the environmental benefits provided by the dam, failed to convey the real extent of environmental impact, and lacked adequate solutions to environmental concerns.
Environmentalists internationally began to protest more vociferously. Human rights advocates criticized the resettlement plan. Archeologists balked at the submergence of a huge number of historical sites. Many mourned the loss of some of the world's finest scenery.
Increasing numbers of engineers doubted whether the dam would actually achieve its stated purposes. Chinese journalist/engineer Dai Qing published a book relentlessly criticising the project by the Chinese scientists, yet many foreign construction companies continued to press their governments to financially support the construction in hopes of winning contracts.
Approval of project
In the face of much domestic and international pressure, the State Council agreed in March 1989 to suspend the construction plans for five years. After the TS protests of 1989, however, the government forbade public debate of the dam, accused foreign critics of ignorance or intent to undermine the regime, and imprisoned Dai Qing and other famous critics.
Premier Li Peng crusaded for the dam and pushed it through the National People's Congress in April 1992 despite the opposition or abstention from one-third of the delegates. Such actions were unprecedented from a body that usually rubberstamped all government proposals.
Resettlement soon began, and physical preparations started in 1994. While the government solicited technology, services, hardware and financing from abroad, leaders reserved the engineering and construction contracts for Chinese firms.
Corruption scandals have plagued the project. It was believed that contractors had won bids through bribery and then skimped on equipment and materials to siphon off construction funds. The head of the Three Gorges Economic Development Corp. allegedly sold jobs in his company, took out project-related loans and disappeared with the money in May 2000. Officials from the Three Gorges Resettlement Bureau were caught embezzling funds from resettlement programs in January 2000.
Much of the project's infrastructure was so shoddy that Premier Zhu Rongji ordered some of it to be demolished in 1999 after a number of high-profile accidents including a collapse of a bridge. Zhu Rongji, who had been a harsh critic of the project, announced that the officials had a "mountain of responsibility on their heads". Around the time, a significant crack had also developed in the dam. To offset construction costs, project officials had quietly changed the operating plan approved by the NPC to fill the reservoir after six years rather than 10. In response, 53 engineers and academics petitioned President Jiang Zemin twice in the first half of 2000 to delay full filling of the reservoir and relocating the local population until scientists could determine whether a higher reservoir was viable given the sedimentation problems. Construction continued regardless.
Debate over the dam
Officials report that the plan is within its US$25 billion budget and insisted early on that the project would pay for itself through electricity generation. However, the project is thought to have cost more than any other single construction project in history, with unofficial estimates of US$100 billion or more.
Increasing wealth disparity
Critics see the dam as primarily serving the interests of east coast industrialists since they have the most need for the hydro-electric power. Unfortunately, this is at the expense of millions of people displaced from prime arable land. Making matters worse, relocation compensation has been inadequate (with corrupt officials stealing from the fund), the number of people displaced has been grossly underestimated, and their new land is of poor quality.