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Global Warming Threatens Tibet Rail Link

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  • mtneuman@juno.com
    Global Warming Threatens Tibet Rail Link CHINA: June 24, 2005 BEIJING - Rising temperatures on the roof the world threaten China s controversial railway link
    Message 1 of 1 , Jun 23, 2005
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      Global Warming Threatens Tibet Rail Link

      CHINA: June 24, 2005

      BEIJING - Rising temperatures on the "roof the world" threaten China's
      controversial railway link across the snow-covered Tibetan plateau, the
      China Daily said on Thursday.

      The pan-Himalayan rail project, which began in 1958, eight years after
      Chinese troops invaded Tibet, is expected to be finished by the end of
      this year.
      "By 2050, safe operation of the Qinghai-Tibet railway will be affected if
      temperatures keep rising steadily as observed over past decades," Luo
      Yong, deputy director of China's National Climate Centre, was quoted as

      Winter and summer temperatures on the Tibetan plateau could jump as much
      as 3.4 degrees Celsius (6.1 degrees Fahrenheit) by 2050, causing normally
      frozen ground under the rail line to melt, the China Daily said.

      Many climatologists considered the plateau a "magnifier" of global
      climate change and an indicator of warming trends across East Asia, it

      The railway will span 2,040 km (1,270 miles) from Xining in Qinghai
      province, to the capital of Tibet, Lhasa.

      China says the rail link will promote development and help raise living
      standards in the impoverished region, while Tibet activists say it will
      speed up the pace of Chinese migration to the area and dilute Tibetan

      Luo issued his warning at a symposium on climate change in Beijing, which
      has been simmering under temperatures as high as 40 C (104 F) this week
      in a heat wave that has struck much of northern China.
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