China to Flatten 700 Mountains to Build a City

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David Silverman/Getty Images

New high-rise buildings are constructed over traditional low-level dwellings on the banks of the Yellow River on December 9, 2010 in downtown Lanzhou, the capital of China's Gansu province.

Last month China made news with the surprising announcement that a firm in the city of Changsha would attempt to build the world’s tallest skyscraper in 90 days. Now, the country is making headlines with another ambitious challenge — flattening 700 mountains in order to build a city.

(MORE: China Plans to Build the World’s Largest Skyscraper in Just 90 Days)

The so-called “mountain-moving project,” was actually launched in October, and not only is the scale gargantuan, but the costs are astronomical. As much as $3.5 billion will be used to blow up 700 mountains, the Guardian reports, to make room for a full-fledged city in a poor, mountainous province in northwestern China. The country’s state council approved the plan in August after years of preparation, according to China Economic Weekly magazine.

The future city, called the Lanzhou New Area, will be built on the outskirts of Lanzhou, the capital of Gansu province with a population of 3.6 million. The company behind the proposal, China Pacific Construction Group,  promises to build an urban paradise, 10 square miles in size and capable of generating as much as $43 billion in GDP by 2030, China Daily reports.

The promotional video shows the new metropolis, which will cost another $11 billion to build, will be filled with high-rises, lakes, beaches and gardens.

It sounds grand — except for the fact that Lanzhou has some of the worst pollution in China, according to World Health Organization. Factories producing textiles, fertilizer and chemicals have clogged the air with smoke and particulates, while their waste has discolored the Yellow River, which runs through the province.

(PHOTOS: Root of the Nation: Zhang Kechun Photographs China’s Yellow River)

Experts have raised concerns about whether the project is environmentally viable. Gansu is an arid province, surrounded by deserts and scoured by sandstorms. But China Pacific Construction Group, one of the nation’s biggest construction companies, said there is no need to worry.

“Lanzhou’s environment is already really poor, it’s all desolate mountains which are extremely short of water,” a spokesperson told the Guardian via email. “Our protective style of development will divert water to the area, achieve reforestation and make things better than before.”

38 comments
donc314
donc314 like.author.displayName 1 Like

These must be pretty small mountains if you have to knock down 700 to yield ten square miles. . Anyone have coordinates?

melonheadx13
melonheadx13 like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

i thought they already had cities or large apartment projects already built and sitting vacant.  i think this disaster will be a harsh lesson in market economics unless they do another great leap forward.

lloydcata
lloydcata

China is building 21st Century (planetary) systems. These -systems(cities, in this case)- are 'their' way Forward. The Israeli's attempted to 'make the desert bloom' and for the most part 'failed'. China is building structures in the desert that far exceed the imagination(CIA) and cost(FED) of the ability of the US.


This is not to instill fear or jealousy among Westerners. It is just -their- analysis of where they  are going, which of course comes with the -defensive- measures to ensure YOU can't stop them from getting there.  Now, ...when you can't -afford- to match their economic engine, which will certainly be overtaking yours at #1, you don't even have the -leadership- to address the problem(which is uniquely YOURS).


Yet, you will buy more bombs and bullets, paid for with your Chinese credit card, getting nothing but corpses in return, and after all the Blood & Treasure simply declare yourself the 'winner'. How 'exceptional' is that! By the time you figure out what's going on at those Chinese desert structures maybe you'll realize that your pockets are as empty as your heads.

dgdoesstuff
dgdoesstuff like.author.displayName 1 Like

I'm watching Planet Earth fall apart and it's not my country doing it. 

Ya know how weird that is? O.o?

wynsar48
wynsar48

Moving mountains and killing hundreds of thousands of dogs for "winter meat".....civilized?  I don't think so

UyenDinh
UyenDinh

@wynsar48 

In the U.S. I'm sure we blew up a lot of things too. We eat cows. I don't hear India calling us uncivilized for enjoying our steaks. In China, the people there don't usually hold dogs to the same standard that we do here. By judging them without knowing your facts you are sounding ignorant. 

=

mrbomb13
mrbomb13 like.author.displayName 1 Like

@UyenDinh @wynsar48 

Careful - that's an 'apples to oranges comparison.'  Here's why:

1) In the US, things were indeed "blown up."  Mountainsides were dynamited for quarrying, mineshafts were dug into, and hillsides were water-blasted away during the Gold Rush (among other things).  However, never in US history has something ever been done like China's action.  Blowing up 700 mountains is unique to China, and very likely (99% certain) only China.

2) India is more than free to call "us" (i.e. the US) uncivilized for enjoying our steaks.  However, we could shoot right back at them for arranged marriages to children, heavy pollution, drinking/bathing in the same rivers as they urinate/defecate, and a still-prevalent sex trade culture.  So, India would be wise to fix its own problems before criticizing anyone else's.

3) China too would be wise to hold off from criticism of other countries.  Need I elaborate on the adverse effects of enduring communism - jailing dissenters, policing the Internet, the Cultural Revolution, sweatshop factory conditions, mistreatment of Tibet, aiming 1,000 missiles at Taiwan, etc.?  


mrbomb13
mrbomb13 like.author.displayName 1 Like

@DaiDavies @mrbomb13 @UyenDinh @wynsar48 

First, thanks for your reply.  A few comments in response:

1) GMOs (as they pertain to crops) have their share of benefits and detriments.  With a rising world population, we can fully expect that gradually improved GMOs are the way of the future.

2) Please substantiate your argument that America's gun laws are "horrible" with studies/statistics, and not just anecdotal evidence (i.e. the Aurora and Newtown shooting tragedies).

3) Israel is surrounded by Arab/Muslim nations that want to wipe it off the map.  Additionally, it is the only stable democracy in the Middle East.  Why wouldn't we want to support it?

4) Please clarify your comments on racism/censorship (especially when such sentiments exist in many other places as well, making it commonplace).

5) In America, gay marriage is a states' rights issue.  Each state can make its own choice as to whether to allow it.  That's the benefit of living in a democracy.

6) In America, the effects of monoculture (as it pertains to agriculture) has not warranted attention by the media.  Please clarify.

7) Slaughterhouses (as they pertain to meats) are a fact of life.  America is a society which consumes meats and vegetables.  Slaughterhouses are a necessary link in the supply chain.

8) The oppression of Indians has been acknowledged and apologized for at least 3 decades.  

9) Please clarify how I'm trying to "silence others for having problems," when I'm clearly trying to engage others (i.e. you) in a rational discussion.

DaiDavies
DaiDavies

@mrbomb13 @UyenDinh @wynsar48

America- GMOs, horrible gun laws, support of Israel, racism, censorship, few places with gay marriage, monoculture, slaughter houses, oppression of native people...

mrbomb13, if you want to silence others for having problems, at least recognise the problems that exist in/because of the states, and then maybe think of how that affects your type of argument.

I don't think  anyone knows what to do to really fix the issues in this world- however, a deeper understanding of where these problems come from would be a nice start (and more public anthropologists).

boots
boots like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

@wynsar48 celebrating and glorifying stupidity on a regular basis(KK, paris, snookie, etc).... civilized? I don't think so.

melonheadx13
melonheadx13

@boots @wynsar48 ex cia man given 30 months in prison, the persecution of aaron swartz and especially the organized crime commited  by the lance armstrong syndicate.  absolutely shameful.

mrbomb13
mrbomb13

@boots @wynsar48 

Careful - that's like comparing apples to oranges.  

Snooki, Paris, KK will have their time in the limelight.  Then, they will age, and fade from relevance.

Mountains, on the other hand, do not reappear so easily.  With regards to a mountain's lifespan, we're talking geological epochs of time (i.e. millions of years).  

China is planning to blow up 700 of those mountains to install a megacity in a questionable location.  That is a fundamental re-shaping of the landscape.  It is a travesty to Mother Nature.  Believe me, if Snooki/Paris/KK were to be eliminated, it would be no great loss to the world.  

computerhoncho
computerhoncho

from the people who brought you the great wall of China......Wait until China demands for gold instead of Treasury bonds, what

IOU can be conjured up ?????

MusikaVanhu
MusikaVanhu like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

Funny how US is ripping down Native American mountains in West Virgina with little or not fuss; yet Chinese ripping down mountains in THEIR OWN country and the ever-interfering & inimical imperialists can't abide people doing whatever they bloody well please with THEIR properties thousands of kilometers away.  lol

Wonder who died and so allowed these foreign critics to delude themselves that they are somehow 'lord of the entire planet' and not just of Europe?  lol

mrbomb13
mrbomb13

@MusikaVanhu

Please provide studies/statistics to substantiate your claim that the, "US is ripping down Native American mountains in West Virgina with little or not fuss."  Evidence for your "foreign critics / lord of the entire planet" claim would also be greatly appreciated.

Also, you need to be careful when discussing "Native American mountains."  First, "Native American" is the politically correct term for the Indians (the European name for the inhabitants of "the Indies").  Second, in the US, Indians were put on to reservations to 1) preserve their safety against outside attacks and 2) discourage them from raiding surrounding towns/cities.

While the reservation is considered "tribal land," the US Government and/or businesses may submit bids to drill under the mountains for natural resources.  That's why I'm asking you to provide evidence for your claim.  If the mountains are being drilled under contract, than there's no problem.  On the other hand, if outside entities are drilling without prior consent, you could be on to something.

MusikaVanhu
MusikaVanhu

@mrbomb13 @MusikaVanhu  

The so-called 'evidence' you desire is in the history books, REAL HISTORY books.  You know; the real history that you were not taught in your mis-educational system.

Those who are leveling Native American mountains are CRIMINAL INVADERS of said lands!

Native people DID NOT invite the criminal invaders to offer them your 'contract'.  Such 'contracts' ARE ULTIMATELY IMPOSED on colonized Native peoples of the America!

Don't expect those of larcenous hearts to appreciate and accept the above real history of America; lies & propaganda have been your gruel for way too long.  No chance of a moral compass being part of your makeup.

mrbomb13
mrbomb13

@MusikaVanhu @mrbomb13

1) Please provide the titles of those "REAL HISTORY" books (which I assume you have read in full).

2) Please provide evidence of the "mis-educational system" in which I was supposedly taught.

3) Again, you need to specify as to whether a contractual agreement was in place before mountain drilling began.  You cannot so draw such over-generalizations.

4) "Native people DID NOT invite the criminal invaders to offer them your 'contract.'"  Again, if you're talking about modern contract, you need to provide specific evidence.

5) Contracts are no longer "imposed" on the Indians.  In modern times, all contracts are negotiated to ensure a Win/Win situation for both sides.  Again, the burden of proof is on you to prove otherwise.

6) Again, you need to cite your positions with articles, studies, and/or statistics.  Otherwise your claims sound like nothing more than a rant.

JasonDStanfield
JasonDStanfield like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 3 Like

@MusikaVanhu mate... your getting Governments and the normal people commenting, mixed up.... what the chinese and american governments are doing is indefensible... and the common folk commenting is our born right...
i dont know where you get your prejudice from but take a deep breath and ask yourself what is the chinese gov. giving you to compensate the fact that they are flattening your inherited land... nothing?... then why defend them. 
you are just brain washed. or you are part of a government owned construction company!!
and any national treasure should be divided up equally between the people... not used to line the pockets of officials...
you are a simple moron. and shouldnt we be asking what the average chinese citizen thinks about it... they are the only ones that truly matter in all of this. china and america have too many problems as it is, without you spruking hate towards either.

Obbop
Obbop like.author.displayName 1 Like

Create some jobs to keep the common folks working.

Perhaps they will use some energy-saving components and plan ahead to recycle as mush as possible.

MusikaVanhu
MusikaVanhu like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 3 Like

Good on the ever 'inward-looking'  Chinese!

Use the national treasure to build up China instead of wasting national treasure on weapons and warmongering around the planet, and making enemies of everyone.

JasonDStanfield
JasonDStanfield like.author.displayName 1 Like

@MusikaVanhu and apparently mate, there is a whole town in china with no people (ghost town), why do they need to build another one...
have a think about it...... reasons given by gov. are rarely the real reasons... not sure what they might be, but the ones they tell us are always BS

MusikaVanhu
MusikaVanhu

@JasonDStanfield @MusikaVanhu  

Even if your die-heart anti-Chinese assertions could be correct, does your government "always" tell their citizens the truth?

Maybe your government's BS is stinker and sweeter to you?  lol

VincentLovece
VincentLovece like.author.displayName 1 Like

This is a waste of money on a gigantic scale. It will almost certainly ruin the environment more than it already is, and create more unneeded housing, and create yet another ghost city. Seriously, Google in "China" and "ghost city" or "ghost cities", and you will see what China's "dynamic" economy is sustained by. Real-estate bubbles, one after the other.

cliassh
cliassh

@VincentLovece 

The ghost city has nothing to do with the city 'Lanzhou' mentioned in this report, plz criticise after you understand what is going on.


MusikaVanhu
MusikaVanhu like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

@VincentLovece  

Better than being a warmonger with the national wealth

Better dead cities at home than massively murdering people abroad

JasonDStanfield
JasonDStanfield like.author.displayName 1 Like

 @MusikaVanhu you can thank Japan for bombing pearl harbour for the americans willingness to go to war...
they were staying out of WWII until then in an isolationist policy... so i thank them for some of they're subsequent warmungering.
but they didnt know when to stop.... its hard to stop things once they're started.

Xreals45K
Xreals45K

@MusikaVanhu @JasonDStanfield Every country criticizes each other all the time, get use to it. MusikaVanhu, if there is no objection to things, anyone anywhere would be able to do anything with impunity, especially China with it's long rap-sheet of human/worker rights violation etc...(google it!). The US has armed up because of history's lessons. And where do you get off with defending Japan with Pearl Harbor? You want us to focus on a conspiracy theory vs. the fact that Japan had already invaded almost every Asian country around it! Hawaii and Alaska would be the places they'd need to get to first...and you want to tell me that the war mongerers that invaded those countries and ENSLAVED the people there for natural resources to fuel it's further advance on the world had the right to attack a country that wanted to keep out of that conflict?!?!?!?!?!?! Guess what...terrorists do exist! FACT! Who do we shoot at? Any country with satellites in space can prove or disprove anything, and the ones with those capabilities all hate each other....so why wouldn't they?! There are terrorists in every country of the world! How did the US provoke 9/11? Those idiots will do suicide attacks because they are brain washed! They were raised that way, they were born for that purpose even! And others are forced! I mean hell they'd even kill me for even saying this. The US is armed to defend itself and others, but it can't do it alone. What did the US do to provoke the terrorists? Hmmm?

BebeWu
BebeWu

@MusikaVanhu @JasonDStanfield 

Just take a deep breath and tune out the political propaganda and hate-mongering. Your biliousness hurts only yourself by garnering the amused contempt of more articulate readers.


MusikaVanhu
MusikaVanhu

@JasonDStanfield@MusikaVanhu 

Instead of swallowing the propaganda; hook, line & sinker, go research a bit of the available history.  The Japanese did not bomb Pear Harbor 'out of the blue'; the US WAS committing 'acts of war' against the Japanese!

 US 911 was very similar to the attack on Pear Harbor.

A lot of ignoramuses ALSO wrongly believe that the US did not provoke 911; and the maniac muslims were just be terrorists for the heck of it.  lol 

Truth is; Americans' so-called 'superpower' arrogance disallowed the learning & heeding historical lessons taught decades back:  You may bully some of the people some of the time and they may not strike back; but you CANNOT bully all of Earth's peoples all of the time and have no negative consequences.  Some WILL do even suicide attacks as a reply.


wynsar48
wynsar48

of course no consideration for the animals who inhabit the area............Are we going to make it as a species....very iffy at this time

cliassh
cliassh

@wynsar48 


what you don't know is that the 700 moutains are already inhabitable, and there always land-sliding happening.

BulliSot
BulliSot

Do China already have a Ghost-town? why  make more city? well China has a good future of wealth and hopefully invest into some good technology !