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Three Gorges Dam Withstands Largest Flood Peak

The highest flood peak in this flood season on the Yangtze River has passed through the Three Gorges Dam area as of Sunday.
The flood, the third in the season formed due to continuous rainstorms upstream since mid July, poured into the reservoir in central China's Hubei Province at a peak speed of 44,000 cubic meters per second Saturday afternoon.
It has slowed down as of Sunday morning and the speed is expected to drop to 30,000 cubic meters per second in three days, according to Zhao Yunfa, a senior engineer with China Yangtze Three Gorges Project Corporation (CTGPC).
Seventeen sluice gates have been opened to keep water level below the designed 144 meters and to ease the flood pressure on the mid-lower reaches. At present, the project is working normally, according to Zhao.
However, some 60 boats and more than 200 workers are trying to clear up a large amount of floating plant roots, crop straws, rotten leaves and tree branches flushed into the reservoir by the flood, preventing them from affecting shipping and navigation.
The reservoir's water level has been allowed to fluctuate between 143.9 and 145 meters during the flood season this year, according to CTGPC.
The Three Gorges reservoir, the world's largest hydroelectric project, was built on the Yangtze River, China's longest, to prevent floods and generate electricity.

(Xinhua News Agency July 23, 2007)

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