THE QUANTITATIVE FEATURES OF CHINA'S WATER RESOURCES: AN OVERVIEW
AffiliationDepartment of Hydrology & Water Resources, The University of Arizona
KeywordsWater-supply -- China.
Water resources development -- China.
Water resources development.
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AbstractChina has a long history of hydrological development. According to Chinese legends, famous projects of flood water diversion were developed by the Great Yu as early as the year two thousand B.C. The earliest hydrological record appeared in 256 B.C., when Mr. Lipin and his son constructed the Dujiangyan irrigation system in the upper reach of the Mingjiang River in Sichuan Province. At Baopingkao, the water intake point of the Dujiangyan irrigation system, a water staff gage was carved on a stone for the measurement of water levels. Although hydrological studies in China started early, hydrology and water resources as modern sciences have been developed only in the last several decades, particularly rapidly in the last 30 years. For instance, the number of hydrological stations has increased 45 times, from about 350 to more than 16,000. Of these, about 3300 stations also take flow velocity measurements. The average density of the hydrological stations is about one per 530 km2 and that of discharge measurement stations about one in 3,000 km2. These stations are highly concentrated in eastern China. The longest records of precipitation are maintained in the large cities in eastern China, including Beijing, Shanghai and Tianjing. Beijing has 140 years of precipitation records. The Hankao hydrological station on the Changjiang (Yangtze) River has the longest discharge record spanning 117 years (1865- 1982).
Series/Report no.Technical Reports on Hydrology and Water Resources, No. 38
SponsorsThe author would like to acknowledge the editing work on this paper conducted by Professor Nathan Buras and Professor Eugene S. Simpson (present and past heads of Department of Hydrology and Water Resources, University of Arizona). I also wish to thank Professor Laurence J. C. Ma, Director of the Center for International Programs, University of Akron, for his comments on this paper. Mr. Wei Zhong -yi, a Research Associate, Department of Hydrology, Institute of Geography, Academia Sinica, offered his assistance in collecting some data for this paper.
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