Tag Archives: Dehong

As eastern China sizzles, Yunnan beset by too much rain

Summer rains are once again causing serious problems in Yunnan. Large swathes of the province have been pounded by incessant storms for more than a week, causing dangerous flooding and landslides. Heavy rainfall is expected to continue throughout the week, and those in the most waterlogged regions have been told to brace for repeated rounds of inclement weather.

While cities like Beijing endure a heatwave, 11 of Yunnan’s 16 prefectures are experiencing sodden and saturated conditions. All regions in the east — ZhaotongQujing and Wenshan — are dealing with severe flood conditions. Meteorologists warn that sections of the Shanghai-Kunming High Speed Railway “face a high risk of disruption from landslides”.

Wenshan in the southeast has been hit hardest. Website People’s Net reports fast-moving water killed four people in rural villages and swept away or damaged dozens of farms and homes. Flooding is being reported in five of the prefecture’s eight counties, and government response teams estimate damage to infrastructure alone has topped 220 million yuan (US$32 million). Agricultural losses have yet to be tallied.

image: iWeather

Meanwhile, in the southern prefectures of HonghePu’erXishuangbanna and Yuxi, mudslides remain a lingering concern. Landslides were reported across the mountainous and largely agricultural region, with some in Honghe closing highways and completely burying small country roads. In Pu’er’s Jinggu County, 11 centimeters of rain fell in under 24 hours, exacerbating already soaked conditions and forcing the closure of many mountainside roads.

Several thousand people have been relocated — especially in BaoshanDehongLincang and Nujiang prefectures. The precautionary measures went into place as emergency response teams assess dams backlogged with water, attempt to identify mountainsides where landslips may be likely and ascertain which rivers may soon overflow their banks. People traveling by car or bus are encouraged to check local weather conditions and stay alert for dangerous, weather-induced situations.

This article was originally posted here on GoKunming. It is reposted with permission of the author.  

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Filed under SLIDER, Uncategorized, water, Yunnan Province

Report: “Mismanagement” stalling building projects across China

Work continues on the Darui Railroad in western Yunnan Image credit :cr8gc

Work continues on the Darui Railroad in western Yunnan. Image credit: cr8gc

Hundreds of highway and railroad projects are facing delays or otherwise running far behind originally envisioned construction timetables. This, according to a report issued by China’s National Audit Office, is a result of local governments improperly managing infrastructure funds — actions thought to have a direct effect on the country’s stalling economy.

In total, the audit of projects nationwide looked into 815 infrastructure programs across the country. More than 20 percent — 193 in total — were found “to be experiencing significant implementation lags due to a lack of funds or poor initial planning.” Together, the behind-schedule ventures represent government investment of 287 billion yuan (US$45.2 billion).

The architects of China’s economy have traditionally relied heavily on state-funded building projects as a means to revitalize the financial system in times of decline. Therefore, those lagging behind schedule due to mismanagement or misuse are seen as harming the economy in two ways, according to the audit. Not only are funds not being spent as quickly as they are authorized, but the benefits to localities through which new infrastructure projects pass must wait idly for any expected economic uplift.

In Yunnan, this is especially true in the province’s west. A railroad from Dali — traveling through Yongping, Baoshan, Mangshi and terminating at Ruili on the Burmese border — was originally expected to be completed in 2014. It will provide some of the most populated regions in western Yunnan direct rail access to Kunming for the first time ever. However, due to cost over-runs and awkward mountainous terrain, the line is now expected to open as late as 2019.

In an effort to speed up construction along the single-track Darui Railroad (大瑞铁路), Beijing injected a further five billion yuan (US$788 million) in annual funding for the endeavor beginning in 2012. The 335 kilometer railway is 75 percent tunnels and bridges, making for difficult surveys and slow progress, especially in places where engineers must dig under theGaoligong Mountains.

The railway was first conceived of in 1938 as a way to connect Kunming with the British colony of Burma. The outbreak of World War II scuttled those plans. However, they have since been resurrected as one part of the massive BCIM trade corridor, which Beijing hopes will one day provide an overland link between Kunming and seaports on the Indian coast some 2,800 kilometers away.

This post was originally published on GoKunming and written by Patrick Scally. It is reprinted here, in its entirety, with permission from the author. 

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Filed under China, Economic development, Governance, SLIDER, Yunnan Province