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China reports progress in natural disasters monitoring

China reports progress in natural disasters monitoring

Chinese researchers have made significant progress in developing key technologies for natural disaster early warning systems and emergency relief, according to the Ministry of Science and Technology (MST).

The four-year project, "Research on Key Technologies for Geological Disasters Monitoring, Early Warning and Emergency Relief," was initiated in 2006 with support from China's top-level government scientific research funding program.

Scientists involved in the project had made remarkable technological progress in four fields, namely natural disaster recognition in earlier stage, monitoring and early warning, risks assessment and emergency relief, the MST said in a statement on its website.

As part of the project, rain-triggered landslide monitoring and early warning systems have been established around Mount Ailao in southwest China's Yunnan Province and in the southeastern area of east China's Fujian Province.

A natural disasters monitoring system has been developed by Chinese scientific workers using optical fiber technologies. This system with Chinese intellectual property has been put into use in areas, including the the reservoir region of the Three Gorges Project on the middle reaches of the Yangtze River.

According to the MST, the research project also provided substantial technological support in assessment of disasters and relevant relief during China's responses to the Wenchuan earthquake in May 2008 and the massive mudslide in Zhouqu of Gansu last August.

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