Building the World

Drought Strands Boats in Canal


Aerial view of China’s Three Gorges Dam; photograph source, Mount Holyoke College, at

Water has played an important role in Chinese history and continues to be a vital resource today, as evidenced by the value placed on the Grand Canal throughout the dynasties and today. In 2011, however, a severe drought left many without water, particularly in the middle and lower Yangtze River areas. The drought reached as far east as Beijing, stranding boats along the Grand Canal with no water to travel upon. To alleviate some of the distress, water was released from the Three Gorges Dam, a hydroelectric plant in the Hubei province. for more information on the drought, its impact, and efforts to help its victims, please visit : 

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Building the World Blog by Kathleen Lusk Brooke and Zoe G Quinn is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

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