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They say I made the Moon. (13)
Nowhere, Somewhere
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    What happened to nature?
    How to stay in touch with our biological origins in a world devoid of nature? The majestic nature that once inspired poets, painters and...

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    VI. Build To Destroy
    Project: What happened to nature?
    EB - Dam #6 (Yangtze River)

    The Three Gorges Dam is the world’s largest and most powerful hydroelectric dam. Located on the Yangtze River, and straddling Hubei and Sichuan provinces, the dam stretches two kilometers across (five times wider than America’s Hoover Dam) and stands 185 meters high. Its completion will result in the creation of an adjacent 600-kilometer lake. Construction, which began in 1993, is slated for completion by 2009. The dam’s primary functions will be to generate electricity, control floods and provide for inland shipping. In full operation, this dam will generate 18,200 megawatts of electricity from 26 turbines (the output of approximately 16 nuclear power plants). Budgeted investment is nearly $25 billion (all figures quoted in U.S. dollars) but some dam watchers say costs could rise to as much as $75 billion by completion.

    ~ Edward Burtynsky, on the Three Gorges Dam ~

    EB - Feng Jie #5 (Yangtze River)

    The winners of this massive undertaking include those who improved their standard of living and benefited from new housing and new opportunities. China’s industries, hungry for electricity, also win. However, there are many who must face short-term hardship. For instance, farming families stand to lose much as their ancestral lands disappear, often without sufficient compensation. Farmers relocated to land parcels further uphill face the prospect of poor soil, steep slopes and erosion. Furthermore, schemes aimed at integrating farmers into urban economies have met with very limited success. Environmental degradation, escalating costs and human rights concerns are the main issues entangling mega-dam projects today. Experts argue that a series of smaller dams may enable more effective strategies for dealing with flood control. However, the Three Gorges Dam project is a source of intense national pride and the government’s masthead project to show the world what kind of formidable accomplishments it is capable of.

    ~ on the Three Gorges Dam ~

    EB - Urban Renewal #11 (Shanghai)

    To many, the idea of dismantling their community, moving away from neighbors and not receiving satisfactory compensation for prime real estate is a battle worth fighting—enter the Dingzihu or ‘Hold outs.’ Scattered all over Shanghai today one can see lone houses or parts of larger buildings surrounded by rubble where a neighborhood once stood. It’s here, where maverick residents decide to make a last stand to preserve their lifestyle and dignity. Developers are now frequently accused of using heavy-handed tactics to edge the older residents out. This has become the fastest growing source of protest—the forcible eviction of millions from their city homes and farms to make way for profitable new construction projects.

    ~ on Urban Renewal in China ~

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    Sat, Sep 13, 2008  Permanent link

    Sent to project: What happened to nature?
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