mandag 8. februar 2021

China to build the world’s biggest dam on sacred Tibetan river

In the foothills of the Himalayas, where the ancient Yarlung civilisation established the first Tibetan Empire, China has plans to build the world’s biggest hydroelectric dam. In November of last year, China’s state-owned media shared plans for a 60-gigawatt mega-dam on the Yarlung Tsangpo river in the Tibetan Autonomous Region (TAR). Now with the aim of achieving carbon neutrality by 2060, Beijing has redoubled its efforts on its hydropower projects in Tibet, even though the dams have drawn criticism from Tibetan rights groups and environmentalists.

Tenzin Dolmey has never stepped foot on the Tibetan Plateau, but she was brought up with the stories of the great rivers and mountains, which form her ancestral home. “Respect for nature is so deep-rooted,” said Dolmey, who was brought up among Tibetan exiles in India and now teaches Tibetan language and culture in Melbourne, Australia’s second-biggest city. “When we would swim in the rivers, we were told to never use it as a bathroom, because there are river gods in the water.”