In the Shadow of Development – The Opposite End of China

From The Opposite End of China Blog:

With little hope of generating enough profits to match a price tag of $3.7 billion, the rail line to Tibet that opened this past summer has generated a lot of scepticism about the motives of the Chinese government. Many have worried about the influx of tourist hordes into a once-remote area. Some have worried about the military implications. Others have worried about the impact on the environment (from Xinhua):

There are 60.9 million hectares of national nature reserve on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau through which the 1,142-kilometer railway runs, but Huang Difu, chief commander of the Qinghai- Construction Headquarters, revealed how environmental protection was made an expensive priority.

And the loser is… the environment! Congratulations to all of you whom – albeit without a great deal of scientific conviction – just somehow knew that this railway was going to ruin the pristine environment on the Tibet-Qinghai plateau (from Mineweb):[Full Text]

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