The infrastructure growth in China has been drawing eyeballs in many regards, but the plan to construct dams that cutoff river flow from India is rather sinister. China is using it’s control of the region of Tibet to restrict a major international river that flows through Tibet, India, and Bangladesh. The river is called The Brahmaputra and called the Yarlung Tsangpo in Tibet. It’s fed by mountain runoff from Mount Kailash.
Over the last 70 years, China has built an astounding 87,000 dams nationwide. Collectively they generate over 350 GW of hydropower. The downside of dams is the obvious blockage of water flow, which can be very detrimental to any ecosystem downstream relying on the water supply.
India and China share more than 2,000 miles of border. The two huge countries are in constant dispute over regions along the border. There was a full blown war between India and China in 1962 and there have been dozens of clashes since. Fighting this month in the Galwan Valley in Ldakh, India has been the heaviest in 45 years.
Fighting in June killed 20 Indian soldiers, including a Commanding Officer and China is suspected to have sustained 43 casualties based on intelligence. Both countries are nuclear powers, adding a new dimension to the dispute.
In January China approved a new plan for three new dam projects as part of it’s 12th “five-year plan.” China has routinely lied about their dam projects claiming they will be inline dams that do not divert any flow. These so called Run-of-River (ROR) dams are common but China rarely operates these dams as promised, especially when tensions flare.