(Xinhua)

Recently the netizen "Seven Not Up Eight Down" made a post titled <2012: Will the intersection point of the two rivers look like this?>.  Included was a photo that was created by PhotoShop.

In the photo, the two rivers have dried up altogether and the Chaotian Gate is standing between two Grand Canyons.  The inspiration for the photo is the drought that has led to the biggest drop in water level in a century.

Our reporter went out to check the situation.  Although it was drizzling, the Jialing River was dried up with large muddy patches rising in the water.  Many boats were grounded on the river bank, with only some small boats still moving in the middle of the river.  According to one sailor, his boat has been grounded for more than a month already.

On March 7, the Chongqing Marine Affairs Bureau leader said that the river drought in the Chongqing section has been going on for more than two months.  Here are the reasons that contribute to the phenomenon:

1. The weather in western China has been abnormal with very little rainfall.  This led to a reduction in water volume in the Yangtze river.

2. Deforestation has led to less water volume in the green reservoirs.

3.  Chongqing industrial development has been rapidly growing, resulting in bigger intake of water for industrial purposes.

4. There are more hydro-electricity stations upstream, and they slow down the river flow in order to generate electricity.

Is there any chance of the 2012 vision happening?  The Chongqing Marine Affairs Bureau said that there is no sceientic basis whatsoever for this scenario.  The river drought is only temporary.  When the rain season begins in April, the rivers will rise again.  However, it may not be a bad thing if this photo can remind people to be more conscious of environmental preservation and use water frugally.