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Dam proposal opens the floodgates of debate

By Li Jing  (China Daily)

09:54, February 28, 2012

Little egrets are a common sight on Poyang Lake's wetland areas in mid-February. The country's largest freshwater lake, which is in East China's Jiangxi province, is also a crucial winter habitat for migrating birds, many of which are endangered, according to conservationists. (Provided to China Daily)

Project to block China's largest freshwater lake sparks widespread controversy, Li Jing reports from Beijing.

In areas where rain is scarce it is common to see people storing water to get them through dry seasons.

Using the same principle, officials want to dam a major lake in Jiangxi province that has shrunk noticeably but their plan has run into opposition.

Their proposal to dam Poyang Lake took a major step forward this month when it won the backing of the Hydroelectricity Planning Institute.

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