List of rivers of China
The Eastern side of China is made up by flat land and dominated by three major rivers. The Huang He, Chang Jiang and Xi Jiang. The Huang He, meaning Yellow River, is located in the cooler part of China. This river flows into the Bohai Gulf of the Yellow Sea. The Chang Jiang meets with the East China Sea, which is near the city of Shanghai. The Grand Canal, the only major Chinese waterway running from north to south, passes through the basins of the Hai, Huang, Huai, Yangtze, and Qiantang rivers in its 1,mile (1,km) course from Beijing to Hangzhou. One of the greatest engineering projects in China, equal in fame to the Great Wall, it is the world’s longest artificial waterway; some of its sections follow the natural course of a river, while .
Since ancient times, inland water transport has played a major role in moving goods and commodities from production sources to consumption destinations. The high cost of construction prevents railways from being built extensively, and rail transport conditions are often congested. Freight volume carried by highways is limited, and highways are not suitable for moving bulk goods.
Nonetheless, China has more than 75, miles somekm of navigable inland waterways, the most extensive system of any country in the world. The distribution of waterways is chiefly within central and South China, except for a few navigable streams in the Northeast.
One of the first goals of the communist government after it took power in was to establish a national network of waterways. It also initiated a program to build and refurbish port facilities and to dredge river channels.
Water transport development has subsequently received considerable emphasis. Dredging and other improvements to inland waterways have been important to economic reconstruction, while capital and maintenance costs for water transport have been much lower than those for railway transport. Work undertaken in the mids to improve the middle course of the Yangtze allowed it to become navigable throughout the year from its mouth to Yibin in Sichuan.
When the Yangtze is high in summer, it is navigable from its mouth to as far as Chongqing for ships of up to 5, tons. Many cable-hauling stations had been established at rapids on the upper course majlr the Yangtze and of its major tributaries, such as the Wu River. Boats sailing against the current are hauled over the rapids with strong steel cables theee to fixed winches, thus augmenting their loading capacity, increasing speed, and saving time.
Such how to make a fake mustache and beard have permitted regular passenger and cargo services to be operated on the Yangtze.
The Xi River is second in importance only to the Yangtze, being the major water transport artery of South China. Ships of 1, tons can sail up the Xi to Wuzhouwhile smaller craft can sail up its middle and upper courses as well as up the Bei and Dong rivers and the tributaries of all these streams.
The Yangtze and the Xi are not icebound in winter. The Sungari Songhua Riverflowing across the Manchurian Plainis navigable for half of its course; it is icebound from November through March and crowded with traffic the other months of the year.
The Amur HeilongSungari, and Ussuri Wusuli rivers with their tributaries form a network of waterways totaling about 12, miles 20, km in length.
In the past the Huang He was little navigated, especially on its middle and lower courses, but mechanized junks now operate along the middle course in Henan. The Grand Xhinathe only major Chinese waterway running from north to south, passes through the basins of how to stop flooding in yard Hai, Huang, Huai, Yangtze, and Qiantang rivers in its 1,mile 1,km course from Beijing to Hangzhou.
Work on the canal chinaa as early as the 4th century bce and was completed by the end of the 13th century ce. It forms a north-south communications and transport link between the most densely populated areas in China. From the what is a valley girl accent part of the 19th century, however, because of political corruption, mismanagement, and flooding from the Huang Ard, the canal gradually became silted up, and the higher section in Shandong became blocked.
Sinceefforts have been made to reopen the Grand Canal to navigation, this time also by larger modern craft. The canal is important in the north-south transport of bulk cargoes, thus facilitating the nationwide distribution of coal and foodstuffs. Coastal shipping is divided into two principal navigation zones, the northern and southern marine districts. The northern district extends north from Amoy to the North Korean border, with Shanghai as its administrative centre. The southern district extends south from Amoy to the Vietnamese border, with Guangzhou as the administrative centre.
Shanghai, the leading port of China from the early 19th century, was eclipsed by Hong Kong when the latter was reincorporated into the country in The Chinese government also invested heavily in water transport infrastructureconstructing new ports and rebuilding and enlarging older facilities.
A major effort has also been made to increase mechanization and containerization at major international ports. Air travel is particularly suited to China, with its vast territory and varied terrain. Chinese civil aviation has two major categories: air transport, which mainly handles passengers, cargoes, and mail, traveling on both scheduled and nonscheduled routes; and special-purpose aviation, which mainly serves industrial and agricultural production, national defense, and scientific and technological research.
The aims of civil aviation in Wuat have been primarily to extend air routes; to strengthen the link between Beijing and other important cities, as well as remote border and interior areas; to develop special-purpose flights serving the needs of agriculture, forestry, how to memorize a song geologic prospecting; and to increase the number of large transport airplanes.
In the s international aviation depended mainly on Soviet support, and all principal international air routes originally passed through Moscow using Soviet planes. As Sino-Soviet relations deteriorated in the late s, China began to open direct air routes to other ahat as well. In an effort to improve efficiency and service, regional airlines were then introduced in competition with the airlines operated by the CAAC.
It has since been expanded multiple times and is now known as Capital Wbat Airport. Major airport construction projects since include new facilities at MacauHong KongShanghaiand Guangzhou The Chinese Air Force controls a large number of airfields; retired Air Force personnel have been the major source of civilian pilots.
Airplanes, including various types of mxjor aircrafthave long been made by China. Civil airliners for long-distance flights, however, are still mostly purchased abroad. Videos Images Audio Interactives. Additional Info. Load Previous Page. Waterways of China Since ancient times, inland water transport has played a major role in moving goods and commodities from production sources to consumption destinations.
Chinese-built passenger steamer in the harbour at Dalian, Liaoning province, China. Terminal with fhe of containers waiting for shipping or delivery, Hong Kong.
Load Next Page.
What are the Seven Major Rivers in China?
Apr 17, · Climate extremes can severely impact socio-economic development. Climate trends of three temperature and three precipitation climate indices were evaluated in observational data, 23 models from the 5th Coupled Model Intercomparison Projects (CMIP5), and 20 models from CMIP6. The climate indices were calculated over the whole of China, and individually over the basins of its three major rivers.
Together with its upper-course streams, the Xi River flows generally eastward for 1, miles 1, km from the highlands of Yunnan province to the South China Sea and drains—along with the Bei , Dong, and Pearl Zhu rivers—a basin with an area of , square miles , square km.
The Xi is shorter than the other important Chinese rivers—the Yangtze River Chang Jiang and the Huang He Yellow River —but it delivers an enormous quantity of water, and its volume of flow is second only to that of the Yangtze.
The name Xi River is more narrowly applied only to its lower course. The Xi itself drains an area of about , square miles , square km of southern China and northern Vietnam. Most of the mountains and hills in the basin are composed of limestone, and the river has cut a cavernous valley through them.
The riverbed is broken by rapids and gorges, and its walls are often high and steep. The landscape is of the type known as karst , in which the limestone rocks are honeycombed with tunnels and openings so that much of the drainage runs underground, and deep sinkholes abound. The Nanpan drops about 5, feet 1, metres in the first miles km of its course and flows in a southeasterly direction through Yunnan province. It then forms part of the border between Guizhou province and the Zhuang Autonomous Region of Guangxi for a distance of about miles km.
Southeast of the town of Ceheng, the river receives the Beipan River and is then known as the Hongshui River. This section of the river flows about miles km through a narrow valley with high, mountainous banks that tower about feet metres above the riverbed.
The bed—between and 1, feet 50 and metres wide—is broken by rocky rapids that are less than 3 feet 1 metre deep and difficult to navigate. At Gongchuan it turns northward and then resumes its easterly direction.
At Shilong the river receives the Liu River, its major left- north- bank tributary, and is then called the Qian River. This section of the river is the shortest, no more than 75 miles km long, and the river drops about 50 feet 15 metres in this distance.
The channel grows dramatically, occasionally achieving depths of feet 85 metres. For almost half its length, the Qian flows through the narrow, rock-strewn Dateng Gorge between the cities of Wuxuan and Guiping.
At the end of this section, the river receives its major right- south- bank tributary, the Yu River , and is then called the Xun River. The Yu River rises in southeastern Yunnan province and flows about miles km eastward in Guangxi to the point at Guiping where it joins the Xian to form the Xun River.
The Xun flows for about miles km in an easterly direction, dropping a further 55 feet 17 metres and receiving the Beilu River on the right bank at Tengxian and the Gui River on the left bank at Wuzhou Cangwu on the border with Guangdong province.
Below Wuzhou, where it enters Guangdong, the river becomes known as the Xi. Its valley consists of a series of winding gorges and wide hollows. The Sanrong and Lingyang gorges narrow to widths of to feet 70 to 80 metres and are about feet 75 metres deep. Throughout its mile km length the Xi drops only about 30 feet 10 metres , flowing to the east until it joins the Bei River at Sanshui.
At Sanshui the Xi and Bei are linked by a short channel but then divide. The larger branch, the Xi, bends to the south and forms the western border of the delta, while a lesser branch, the Foshan, flows eastward into the delta itself. The Pearl River itself begins just below Guangzhou; Hong Kong is to the east and Macau to the west of the entrance to the Pearl River estuary, which is about 18 miles 29 km wide. Covering an area of about 1, square miles 3, square km in southeastern Guangdong province, the delta is a complex network of river branches and channels divided by islands of alluvial soil and by hills that were once coastal islands.
The fertile islands are only slightly above sea level and are protected from the sea by a system of flood dikes. Most of the increased flow results from the summer monsoon rains, when torrential floods may occur and frequently do cause catastrophic damage. The river is at its lowest during the dry winter period. Fluctuations in the water level during the year may vary by as much as 80 feet 25 metres at Wuzhou; in the lower course and the delta, variations in the level are smaller.
Especially dangerous are the delta floods that result from a combination of flooding rivers and high tides. Throughout the mountainous part of its course, the river has little relationship to the peoples who live in its vicinity.
Most settlement occurs on small plots of land between mountains. The villages are isolated, compact agricultural units. River towns become more frequent in the hilly part of the Guangxi region, where the river is an artery of commerce; towns include Gongchuan, Qianjiang, Laibin, Guiping, Tengxian, and Wuzhou. The Pearl River Delta is one of the most densely populated areas of China. The entire region is intensively cultivated.
Rice is the most important crop, but wheat, corn maize , sorghum, beans, and potatoes are also grown in the cooler, drier climate of the west.
An intricate irrigation system includes more than 1, miles 1, km of flood dikes. Forests cover much of the mountainous region of the Xi River basin, especially in the north and west, the stretch along the border of Guizhou province being the most heavily forested. The more important tree species economically are pine, fir, camphor, tung, and bamboo. In the eastern part of the basin—notably in the low places of the maritime zone and in the valleys—the land is mostly cleared for cultivating crops, including rice, peanuts groundnuts , sugarcane, hemp, tobacco, and fruit.
The river contains an abundance of freshwater fish, and the waters of the Pearl River Delta are in some cases enclosed with bamboo fences and used for fish farming. In flood time, the river is navigable for vessels drawing 16 feet 5 metres as far upstream as Wuzhou. The Xi basin contains more than 9, miles 14, km of water routes, of which more than 6, miles 11, km are in use. Steamships can sail along more than one-third of the total length of the waterways, while junks and small craft ply all the navigable waters.
The water routes do not form an integrated system, however. Guangzhou, the largest city in the basin, does not have direct access to either the Xi or the Bei. The channels that connect the city to the water routes of the basin are winding and mud-filled and are navigable only by shallow-draft boats. Because most of the river branches of the delta are shallow, oceangoing vessels cannot reach Guangzhou but must dock at Huangpu Whampoa , 10 miles 16 km downstream.
Navigation is hampered by low water on many tributaries and by rapids on some sections of the river system. In several places, as on the Yu River, river craft are pulled over the rapids with hand-worked windlasses. During low-water periods, transportation ceases on some rivers, including the Dong and the Bei. Xi River system. Article Introduction Land People and economy Show more. Videos Images.
Additional Info. More About Contributors Article History. Print print Print. Table Of Contents. While every effort has been made to follow citation style rules, there may be some discrepancies.
Please refer to the appropriate style manual or other sources if you have any questions. Facebook Twitter. Give Feedback.
Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article requires login. External Websites. The Editors of Encyclopaedia Britannica Encyclopaedia Britannica's editors oversee subject areas in which they have extensive knowledge, whether from years of experience gained by working on that content or via study for an advanced degree See Article History.
Get a Britannica Premium subscription and gain access to exclusive content. Subscribe Now. Hear a captain discuss the improvements brought in the shipping industry along the Xi River since the s. Learn More in these related Britannica articles:.
The Xi River is second in importance only to the Yangtze, being the major water transport artery of South China. Ships of 1, tons can sail up the Xi to Wuzhou, while smaller craft can sail up its middle and upper courses as well as up…. The Pearl River itself, extending southward from Guangzhou, receives the Dong River and opens into its triangular estuary that has Macau west and Hong Kong east at its mouth.
Entirely rain-fed, these rivers are…. History at your fingertips. Sign up here to see what happened On This Day , every day in your inbox! Email address. By signing up, you agree to our Privacy Notice. Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox.