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Flooding fear after office replaces trees

PART of a forest designated for flood protection has been felled to make room for a two-story government office building, according to a report.

It happened in Wuhan City, capital of central China's Hubei Province. The sewage administration office of the Wuchang District Water Affairs Bureau moved in April into a new building near the Wujin cofferdam, a few kilometers from the Yangtze River, China National Radio reported yesterday.

The office director, surnamed Li, said her office moved in after the superior government arranged it. Her office's original building had been relocated for a major project, she told the Changjiang Times.

Officials with Wuhan planning authorities told the Wuhan-based newspaper that the building was illegally built as it had not been approved.

Felling in the 3,000-square-meter metasequoia forest started in 2007 and stopped at the end of last year, according to an official of the Wuhan Power Equipment Factory, which is near the forest.

The forest used to absorb overflow on rainy days, he told the Changjiang Times. But after the new building was erected, rainwater often flooded the neighboring factory.


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