The Ministry of Environmental Protection (MEP) has ordered an ecological assessment on the impact of a proposed hydroelectric dam on the Yangtze River, the Wall Street Journal reported. In announcing the assessment at a press conference, MEP chief engineer Wan Bentai said that the ministry could reject the project if the assessment shows it could harm the environment. Opponents of the Xiaonanhai dam say that it could flood most of the Yangtze’s last fish reserve and prevent fish migration, potentially leading to the extinction of species like the Chinese sturgeon. The assessment will be commissioned by the government of Chongqing; the city lies downstream of the proposed dam. No timetable was given for the completion of the assessment.
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