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China Approves Dam Building on “Brahmaputra River”

What is the news?

Chinese Government approves dam-building on Brahmaputra river under its draft of the New Five year plan (2021-2025).

What does the five-year plan provide?
  • The New Five-year plan approves the dams to be built on the lower reaches of the Brahmaputra river. The river is also known as Yarlung Zangbo in Tibet.
    • The lower reaches refer to the sections of the Brahmaputra river in Tibet before it flows into India.
  • The plan also calls for building a hydropower base on the lower reaches of the Brahmaputra river. Clean energy bases in the upper and lower reaches of the Jinsha River are also under the proposal (the upper course of the Yangtze River in western China).
About Brahmaputra River:
  1. Brahmaputra River also called Yarlung Tsangpo in Tibet, Siang/ Dihang River in Arunachal Pradesh. It is a trans-boundary river that flows through Tibet, India, and Bangladesh.
  2. Origin: The river rises in the Chemayungdung Glacier in the Kailash Range in Tibet. It descends rapidly from Tibet forming a Grand Canyon and then flows eastward and reaches Namche Barwa. It then takes a U-turn and enters India in Arunachal Pradesh and known as dihang.
  3. Important Tributaries of River Brahmaputra:
    • Major left bank tributaries: Burhi Dihing, Dhansari (South), Kailang, Lohit, Dibang
    • Major right bank tributaries: Subansiri, Kameng, Manas, Sankosh, Teesta.
  4. Perennial River: the Brahmaputra is a perennial river. It has several peculiar characteristics due to its geography and prevailing climatic conditions.
    • Perennial Rivers can be defined as the river with the continuous flow throughout the year, such as the rivers Ganges and Brahmaputra.
  5. Significance: Most rivers on the Indian subcontinent have female names. But this river has a rare male name that literally translates as ‘Son of Brahma’. The river is also revered by Hindus, Jains, and Buddhists.
  6. Biodiversity: The rich rainforests of this basin is home to many species of flora and fauna. It hosts National Parks like the Kaziranga, Manas, and Kanchanjunga.
  7. Importance of Brahmaputra River for India:
    • The Brahmaputra River and its tributaries carry more than 30% of the total water resource potential of India.
    • The Brahmaputra River is also extremely important for livelihood and for transportation of people and materials in North East India.

Source: The Hindu

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