鄱阳湖是中国最大淡水湖，在供水、防洪、水质、渔业等方面有巨大的效益，对于江西、长江中下游以乃至全中国人民的生计至关重要。鄱阳湖的生态和生物多样性价值已得到全球的承认和关注，这其中包括被列入国际重要湿地。国际鹤类基金会自 1980 年代就一直参与鄱阳湖的研究和保护工作。
鄱阳湖是东亚（也包括俄罗斯和蒙古国广大地区）水鸟一个主要的停歇地和越冬地。每年约有四十万水鸟迁徙至鄱阳湖越冬，其中包括 98%的世界极危物种白鹤，90%多的濒危物种东方白鹳，包括易危物种鸿雁和小白额雁等五种雁类，以及大量的涉禽。鄱阳湖广褒而异质的湖盆使得每种鸟类都能找到其生境和食物。然而，这些水鸟正遭受着严重的威胁和种群下降。鄱阳湖是易危物种白枕鹤在中国最主要的越冬地，过去 15 年里该物种的数量已减少了一半。整个亚洲的湿地退化和破坏使得鄱阳湖变得比以前任何时候都显得更加的重要。
本次信息公示提供了少量的关于项目影响分析或项目设计的信息。环境影响评价应该对鄱阳湖的威胁进行广泛的分析并达成共识，以及对替代方案进行公开考虑。此次公示强调水利枢纽项目的目标是减缓秋季水位的下降。 国际鹤类基金会自1999 年以来在鄱阳湖开展了连续的野外调查。对于鹤类和其它水鸟栖息不利的两个年份都出现在发生大水的时候，或者是紧随大水之后，而鄱阳湖水利枢纽项目不能解决这个问题。
Comments on the First Public Notice for the Environmental Impact Assessment on the Poyang Lake Water Conservancy Project in Jiangxi Province
Recently, the First Public Notice for the Environmental Impact Assessment on the Poyang Lake Water Conservancy Project in Jiangxi Province was posted on official websites at Jiangxi Water Bureau and Jiangxi Environmental Protection Bureau, seeking comments from the public. The International Crane Foundation (ICF) praises the Jiangxi Government for its open attitude regarding the project, and in the meantime has serious concerns about the project.
The healthy wetland ecosystem of Poyang Lake plays a critical role in maintaining stability of China and global ecosystems. Given its complex and irreplaceable functions and our insufficient understanding, we believe that proceeding with the Poyang Lake Water Conservancy Project will lead to high risk to Poyang Lake, with irreversible changes. In order to protect the unique wetland ecosystem and maintain regional sustainable social and economic development, planners should continue to investigate other less expensive and less risky alternatives.
Poyang, the largest freshwater lake in China, has extraordinary significance for the people of Jiangxi, of the entire mid and lower Yangtze River basin, and of China as a whole, including benefits related to water supply, flood control, water quality, and rich harvests of fish and other resources. Poyang Lake’s ecological and biodiversity values have received global concern and recognition, including designation as a Wetland of International Importance under the Ramsar Convention. The International Crane Foundation (ICF) has been involved since the 1980s with research and conservation of Poyang Lake.
Poyang is a key migratory stopover and wintering site for waterbirds across East Asia including vast regions of Russia and Mongolia. 400,000 waterbirds migrate to Poyang Lake each winter including 98% of the world’s Critically Endangered Siberian Cranes, over 90% of the Endangered Oriental Storks, five species of geese including the Vulnerable and declining Swan and Lesser White-fronted Geese, and huge numbers of waders. The diverse conditions across the Poyang Lake Basin allow each species to find its habitat and food. Yet these species endure severe threat and decline. Numbers of the Vulnerable White-naped Crane, for which Poyang is the primary wintering site in China, have dropped to half what they were 15 years ago. Wetland destruction and degradation across Asia have made Poyang Lake more important than ever before.
The announcement for the environmental impact assessment (EIA) for the Poyang Lake Water Conservancy Project provides little information on the impact analysis or the proposed design for the project. An EIA should only proceed following a broad analysis and consensus regarding the threats to Poyang Lake and an open consideration of alternative solutions. The recent announcement emphasizes that the project’s objective is to slow the decline in water levels in autumn. ICF has conducted field investigations annually since 1999. The two years when conditions were the worst for cranes and other waterbirds occurred during or shortly after severe floods, for which the Poyang Lake Water Conservancy Project affords no remedy.
Prior to an EIA, a project evaluation must be conducted based on clear understanding of the threats to the lake. Recent studies indicate that a major cause for earlier autumn water outflows has been the intensive sand dredging occurring near the lake’s outlet. Satellite imagery reveals that the outlet has grown wider and deeper. Sand dredging presents a very different challenge than do changes to the flow of the Yangtze River, and might require different solutions -- potentially much less expensive and risky to the lake ecology than the currently proposed project.
One dominant feature of Poyang Lake is the remarkable fluctuation in its water levels within and among years, which underlies its many ecological values and ecosystem services. This variability drives the ecology and productivity of the system. It is our understanding that operational plans for the water control structure include maintaining predetermined water levels during the autumn, winter and early spring periods. Lessons from many studies around the world, however, indicate that wetlands thrive on the dynamics of drought, flood, and changing water patterns. Understanding of Poyang Lake ecology and ecosystem function, vital to millions of people as well as waterbirds, is still insufficient.
To protect Poyang Lake, the International Crane Foundation is ready to assist with further study and planning.