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China to use Swiss expertise to monitor dams

China has signed a letter of intent with Switzerland with a view to monitoring its 26,000 large dams following Swiss practice.

The Sino-Swiss meeting took place on the sidelines of the annual conference of the International Commission on Large Dams in Lucerne on Wednesday.

Switzerland, with the highest density of dams in the world as well as the world’s highest concrete dam, the Grande-Dixence, sources 55 per cent of its electricity needs from hydroelectric power. 

Swiss security requirements are extremely high to avoid them becoming a threat to the population and cover building standards, monitoring and emergency planning.

For China, monitoring is particularly important, according to a Federal Energy Office expert. This includes the early detection of anomalies and a clear regulation of responsibilities. 

Jia Jinsheng, Chairman of the International Commission on Large Dams, told swissinfo.ch that China also wanted to learn from Switzerland’s experience in choosing its energy priorities, and it dealing with the social issues, since large populations need to be resettled.  

„Everyone knows there is very little change to go forward without dams and reservoirs. But we have to pay more atention to the requirements of the people affected,“ he said.

Jia Jinsheng, Chairman of the International Commission on Large Dams, told swissinfo.ch that China also wanted to learn from Switzerland’s experience in choosing its energy priorities, and in dealing with the social issues, since large populations need to be resettled.  

"Everyone knows there is very little change to go forward without dams and reservoirs. But we have to pay more atention to the requirements of the people affected," he said.

swissinfo.ch and agencies


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