China is working on an incredibly ambitious water diversion project involving the Brahmaputra, one of India’s largest rivers, which may become another point of tension between the two Asian neighbours.
Chinese engineers are testing techniques that could be used to build a 1,000-kilometre (km) tunnel—the world’s longest—to carry water from Tibet to Xinjiang, a barren region in northwest China, according to a report in the South China Morning Post (SCMP). The project would divert water from the Yarlung Tsangpo River in southern Tibet, which turns into the Brahmaputra once it enters India, to the Taklamakan desert in Xinjiang.
“The proposed tunnel, which would drop down from the world’s highest plateau in multiple sections connected by waterfalls, would ‘turn Xinjiang into California’,” the SCMP reported, quoting an anonymous geotechnical engineer. Xinjiang, China’s largest administrative division, comprises vast swathes of uninhabitable deserts and dry grasslands.
The feasibility of the proposed Tibet-Xinjiang project is being tested …