China’s Baihetan Hydropower Station starts operations

The 16,000 MW Baihetan Hydropower Station, which is the world’s second largest hydropower dam (next to the Three Gorges Dam) has started operations on June 28, 2021 in China.

The project, being developed by China Three Gorges Corporation, has a 289-metre-high dam located on the upper section of the Yangtze River. The project entails an investment of CNY 220 billion (~USD 34.07 billion) and will be equipped with 16 hydro-generating units, each with a capacity of 1,000 MW, the largest single-unit capacity in the world.The first two such units are already operation and rest of units are scheduled to be operational by July 2022. The projectis expected to make contributions towards achieving carbon-neutrality goals of China by 2060. However, the dam has some environmental cost as it disrupts the habitats of rare plants and animals such as the endangered Yangtze Finless Porpoise.

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