Costs Associated with Chinas Three Gorges dam

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Costs Associated with Chinas Three Gorges dam

The Three Gorges Dam (TGD) in China is the largest integrated water project in the world. During its implementation and use, TGD created many environmental, social and economic impacts to the citizens of China. The commencement of the project was approved in 1992 with a cost estimate of 8.3 billion dollars. In general, the total cost for construction of TGD was enormous and financial experts have not yet produced the exact figures. First, the construction costs made on major parts of the project were estimated at a range of 25-60 billion dollars. The Chinese government faced many cost related issues associated with construction of the Dam. The government had to resettle people from the dam construction site, build for them new houses, and compensate them for their land. Second, a lot of country’s natural resources were depleted that could be used as sources of income for the citizens (Gleick 141-145).

On the other hand, the construction of Three Gorges Dam improved the financial status of the country. First, the thermal power generated could run many industries manufacturing various goods for export. In addition, dams and reservoirs constructed provided suitable fishing grounds that created job opportunities for locals. Moreover, the calm, deep waters provided wider shipping lanes and encouraged both local and international tourists. Second, Three Gorgers Dam the projected would be able to raise water levels at Yangtze River whereby, adjustments could be made depending on flood-control needs (Gleick 142). This would save the country the emergency costs associated with floods and loss of property by citizens. Finally, TGD would save the country the cost of importing coal that was initially used to run engines for power generation. Developing a hydro thermal power plant would limit the amount of carbon dioxide produced by coal plants that causes global warming (Hays 2011).

Work cited

Gleick, H. P. Three Gorges Dam Project, Yangtze River, China. Water Brief 3. 2009. Retrieved


Hays, J. Three Gorges Dam: Benefits, Problems and Costs. 2011. Retrieved from: