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Unworldly scenes revealed after hydroelectric reservoir dries up in Vietnam drought

Unworldly scenes revealed after hydroelectric reservoir dries up in Vietnam drought

Tuesday, July 02, 2019, 18:17 GMT+7
Unworldly scenes revealed after hydroelectric reservoir dries up in Vietnam drought
Dead tree branches and mud are left in the Ban Ve hydroelectric reservoir, Tuong Duong District, located in the north-central province of Nghe An. Photo: Lo Tu / Tuoi Tre

A severe drought hitting the north-central Vietnamese province of Nghe An has given people living near a reservoir of a hydropower plant the answer to a question they may have long asked -- what does the reservoir bed look like when the water drains away?

But the answer may upset people in Tuong Duong District, home to the Ban Ve hydropower plant, as the serious drought, never seen in many years, only revealed a ruinous landscape of a deserted valley.

Located some 200km northwest of the center of Nghe An, the hydropower plant, one of the ten largest in Vietnam with a capacity of 320 MW, generates electricity for the national grid and a power network of neighboring Laos.

Last month, water supply to the plant’s reservoir was only a third of the average amount in previous years.

Even worse, the plant operator had to open the reservoir’s dam to discharge water to help the local people downstream, who were in need of water for daily use and production during the drought period.

People walk in mud to be able to reach the boats at a dock in Ban Ve hydroelectric reservoir, Tuong Duong District, the north-central province of Nghe An. Photo: Lo Tu / Tuoi Tre

People walk in mud to be able to reach the boats at a dock in the Ban Ve hydroelectric reservoir, Tuong Duong District, located in the north-central province of Nghe An. Photo: Lo Tu / Tuoi Tre

The reservoir’s current water level is so low that it is only 3.5 meters away from reaching the dead storage capacity, or the volume below which water cannot be released from the dam, according to the hydropower plant management.

The body of water has now dried up and looks like a deserted valley, a rare scene. 

Dead tree branches and mud are all left on the reservoir bottom with knee-deep water, giving the zone an unearthly look.

People living in Huu Khuong Commune, which can only be accessed by taking a boat from a dock in the reservoir, may be among the worst sufferers of the dried-up lake as the shuttle service is affected by the low water level.

They have to walk in mud for a short distance to be able to reach the boats.

People walk in mud to be able to reach the boats at a dock in Ban Ve hydroelectric reservoir, Tuong Duong District, the north-central province of Nghe An. Photo: Lo Tu / Tuoi Tre

People walk in mud to be able to reach the boats at a dock in the Ban Ve hydroelectric reservoir, Tuong Duong District, located in the north-central province of Nghe An. Photo: Lo Tu / Tuoi Tre

People walk in mud to be able to reach the boats at a dock in Ban Ve hydroelectric reservoir, Tuong Duong District, the north-central province of Nghe An. Photo: Lo Tu / Tuoi Tre

People walk in mud to be able to reach the boats at a dock in the Ban Ve hydroelectric reservoir, Tuong Duong District, located in the north-central province of Nghe An. Photo: Lo Tu / Tuoi Tre

People walk in mud to be able to reach the boats at a dock in Ban Ve hydroelectric reservoir, Tuong Duong District, the north-central province of Nghe An. Photo: Lo Tu / Tuoi Tre

People walk in mud to be able to reach the boats at a dock in the Ban Ve hydroelectric reservoir, Tuong Duong District, located in the north-central province of Nghe An. Photo: Lo Tu / Tuoi Tre

Dead tree branches and mud are left inside the floor of Ban Ve hydroelectric reservoir, Tuong Duong District, the north-central province of Nghe An. Photo: Lo Tu / Tuoi Tre

Dead tree branches and mud are left in the Ban Ve hydroelectric reservoir, Tuong Duong District, located in the north-central province of Nghe An. Photo: Lo Tu / Tuoi Tre

Water level remains low in Ban Ve hydroelectric reservoir, Tuong Duong District, the north-central province of Nghe An. Photo: Lo Tu / Tuoi Tre

Water levels remain low in the Ban Ve hydroelectric reservoir, Tuong Duong District, located in the north-central province of Nghe An. Photo: Lo Tu / Tuoi Tre

Water level remains low in Ban Ve hydroelectric reservoir, Tuong Duong District, the north-central province of Nghe An. Photo: Lo Tu / Tuoi Tre

Water levels remain low in the Ban Ve hydroelectric reservoir, Tuong Duong District, located in the north-central province of Nghe An. Photo: Lo Tu / Tuoi Tre

People board a boat in Ban Ve hydroelectric reservoir, Tuong Duong District, the north-central province of Nghe An. Photo: Lo Tu / Tuoi Tre

People board a boat in the Ban Ve hydroelectric reservoir, Tuong Duong District, located in the north-central province of Nghe An. Photo: Lo Tu / Tuoi Tre

 

 

People walk in mud to be able to reach the boats at a dock in Ban Ve hydroelectric reservoir, Tuong Duong District, the north-central province of Nghe An. Photo: Lo Tu / Tuoi Tre

People walk in mud to be able to reach the boats at a dock in the Ban Ve hydroelectric reservoir, Tuong Duong District, located in the north-central province of Nghe An. Photo: Lo Tu / Tuoi Tre

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