China (Chongqing) – Three Gorges Dam

the details…
Key pollutant
hazardous solid waste
dumping of hazardous solid waste


Population affected
Children Under 6 Affected
DALYs averted
Hydroelectric power

China Chongqing Green Volunteer’s Union (CCGVU) is an environmental NGO dedicated to environmental protection and sustainable development in the upper reaches of the Yangtze River in central China’s Sichuan province.

This project’s aim was to prevent hazardous solid waste pollution and maintain water quality in the Three Gorges region of the Yangtze River near Chongqing. The Three Gorges Dam, the world’s largest hydro-electric project, was commenced in 1993, and by the time it is completed in 2009, over 1.1 million people will have been resettled and 115 towns and villages submerged. Over 16 million tons of solid waste is dumped in the Three Gorges area every year. If not controlled and treated, almost 3 million tons of this waste will be submerged once flooding of the area begins in mid-2003, causing serious water pollution and possibly affecting the operation of the dam’s power station.

Blacksmith Institute’s funding support enabled CCGVU to conduct an investigation of the most seriously polluted areas that will be affected by the flooding of the reservoir, assist the local government on implementing timely and effective clean-up procedures, and develop a plan for ongoing pollution prevention and water quality maintenance in the Three Gorges area.