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Sustainability of mega water diversion projects : Experience and lessons from China

Yu, Min; Wang, Chaoran; Liu, Yi; Olsson, Gustaf LU and Wang, Chunyan (2018) In Science of the Total Environment 619-620. p.721-731
Abstract

Water availability and water demand are not evenly distributed in time and space. Many mega water diversion projects have been launched to alleviate water shortages in China. This paper analyzes the temporal and spatial features of 59 mega water diversion projects in China using statistical analysis. The relationship between nine major basins is measured using a network analysis method, and the associated economic, environmental and social impacts are explored using an impact analysis method. The study finds the development of water diversion has experienced four stages in China, from a starting period through to a period of high-speed development. Both the length of water diversion channels and the amount of transferred water have... (More)

Water availability and water demand are not evenly distributed in time and space. Many mega water diversion projects have been launched to alleviate water shortages in China. This paper analyzes the temporal and spatial features of 59 mega water diversion projects in China using statistical analysis. The relationship between nine major basins is measured using a network analysis method, and the associated economic, environmental and social impacts are explored using an impact analysis method. The study finds the development of water diversion has experienced four stages in China, from a starting period through to a period of high-speed development. Both the length of water diversion channels and the amount of transferred water have increased significantly in the past 50 years. As of 2015, over 100 billion m3 of water was transferred in China through 16,000 km in channels. These projects reached over half of China's provinces. The Yangtze River Basin is now the largest source of transferred water. Through inter-basin water diversion, China gains the opportunity to increase Gross Domestic Product by 4%. However, the construction costs exceed 150 billion US dollars, larger than in any other country. The average cost per unit of transferred water has increased with time and scale but decreased from western to eastern China. Furthermore, annual total energy consumption for pumping exceeded 50 billion kilowatt-hours and the related greenhouse gas emissions are estimated to be 48 million tons. It is worth noting that ecological problems caused by water diversion affect the Han River and Yellow River Basins. Over 500 thousand people have been relocated away from their homes due to water diversion. To improve the sustainability of water diversion, four kinds of innovative measures have been provided for decision makers: national diversion guidelines, integrated water basin management, economic incentives and ex-post evaluation.

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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Multi-objective analysis, Opportunity cost, Pumping energy, River basin operation, Water scarcity, Water transfer
in
Science of the Total Environment
volume
619-620
pages
11 pages
publisher
Elsevier
external identifiers
  • scopus:85034446599
ISSN
0048-9697
DOI
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
9bedcd5e-ecb7-4c96-8d46-373d81499045
date added to LUP
2017-12-07 09:41:51
date last changed
2018-05-29 09:24:52
@article{9bedcd5e-ecb7-4c96-8d46-373d81499045,
  abstract     = {<p>Water availability and water demand are not evenly distributed in time and space. Many mega water diversion projects have been launched to alleviate water shortages in China. This paper analyzes the temporal and spatial features of 59 mega water diversion projects in China using statistical analysis. The relationship between nine major basins is measured using a network analysis method, and the associated economic, environmental and social impacts are explored using an impact analysis method. The study finds the development of water diversion has experienced four stages in China, from a starting period through to a period of high-speed development. Both the length of water diversion channels and the amount of transferred water have increased significantly in the past 50 years. As of 2015, over 100 billion m<sup>3</sup> of water was transferred in China through 16,000 km in channels. These projects reached over half of China's provinces. The Yangtze River Basin is now the largest source of transferred water. Through inter-basin water diversion, China gains the opportunity to increase Gross Domestic Product by 4%. However, the construction costs exceed 150 billion US dollars, larger than in any other country. The average cost per unit of transferred water has increased with time and scale but decreased from western to eastern China. Furthermore, annual total energy consumption for pumping exceeded 50 billion kilowatt-hours and the related greenhouse gas emissions are estimated to be 48 million tons. It is worth noting that ecological problems caused by water diversion affect the Han River and Yellow River Basins. Over 500 thousand people have been relocated away from their homes due to water diversion. To improve the sustainability of water diversion, four kinds of innovative measures have been provided for decision makers: national diversion guidelines, integrated water basin management, economic incentives and ex-post evaluation.</p>},
  author       = {Yu, Min and Wang, Chaoran and Liu, Yi and Olsson, Gustaf and Wang, Chunyan},
  issn         = {0048-9697},
  keyword      = {Multi-objective analysis,Opportunity cost,Pumping energy,River basin operation,Water scarcity,Water transfer},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {04},
  pages        = {721--731},
  publisher    = {Elsevier},
  series       = {Science of the Total Environment},
  title        = {Sustainability of mega water diversion projects : Experience and lessons from China},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/},
  volume       = {619-620},
  year         = {2018},
}