Enshi Tujia and Miao Autonomous Prefecture
|— Autonomous prefecture —|
|Country||People's Republic of China|
|Prefecture seat||Enshi City|
|• Total||24,000 km2 (9,000 sq mi)|
|• Density||160/km2 ( 410/sq mi)|
|Time zone||China Standard (UTC+8)|
Enshi Tujia and Miao Autonomous Prefecture (Chinese: 恩施土家族苗族自治州; pinyin: Ēnshī Tǔjiāzú Miáozú Zìzhìzhōu) is located in the mountainous southwestern corner of Hubei Province, People's Republic of China. It forms Hubei's southwestern "panhandle", bordering on Hunan in the south and Chongqing Municipality in the west and northwest. The Yangtze River crosses the prefecture's northeastern corner in Badong County.
There are two county-level cities:
There are six counties:
- Xianfeng County
- Laifeng County
- Badong County - site of the 2009 Badong Incident
- Jianshi County
- Hefeng County
- Xuan'en County
|Climate data for Enshi City (1971−2000)|
|Average high °C (°F)||8.3
|Average low °C (°F)||2.6
|Precipitation mm (inches)||29.0
|Avg. precipitation days (≥ 0.1 mm)||11.5||11.4||15.1||15.9||16.3||16.6||16.3||12.8||12.6||14.4||11.9||11.2||166|
|Mean monthly sunshine hours||37.9||44.6||63.1||105.7||124.8||124.4||166.5||204.1||125.7||96.5||69.4||49.2||1,211.9|
|Source: China Meteorological Administration|
The total area is 24,000 square kilometres (9,300 sq mi), and the population is 3,800,000. 52.6% of the population belong to the Tujia and Miao nationalities. Enshi is the only autonomous prefecture in Hubei province.
Enshi is also the only part of Hubei which has been included in the Chinese government's Western exploration programme and over the next 5–10 years they will put 50 billion RMB into its development.
The Qing River in the central part of the prefecture, with its cascade of reservoirs, is an important waterway as well.
Due to the mountainous terrain, until recently the prefecture had no railways, and even the highways were of doubtful quality.
The Yichang-Wanzhou Railway (the Yiwan Railway), completed in December 2010, crosses the prefecture from east to west, providing a more direct connection between Hubei and Sichuan than was previously available. In addition, a direct connection to Chongqing from the Lichuan Station on the Yiwan line is completed. A single line now connects Enshi with Beijing and Wuahn as well as many additional cities. The train between Beijing and Enshi takes approximately 24 hours and includes many stops along the way.
The soil in Enshi is rich in selenium. Enshi is known as the "seleninum capital of China" and is the world's sole independent seleninum deposit. Seleninum Square in the city is named after this rare element.
The countryside has a diverse range of flora and fauna, including many Chinese herbs. Much of the mountain landscape is covered in virgin forest and is home to pangolins.
Enshi locals are especially proud of their potato crops and consider the potato and tea crops to be the region's agricultural specialties.
Enshi Prefecture possesses significant hydroelectric resources. Among major hydroelectric dams already completed, or under construction, within the prefecture are:
- Shuibuya Dam, on the Qing River in Badong County — the tallest concrete face rock-fill dam in the world.
- Jiangpinghe Dam, on the Loushui River, near Jiangpingh Village, Zouma Town, Hefeng County.
"Endless green mountains to walk on, endless clear water going away" (by a poet of the Tang dynasty)
Republic of China's Hubei provincial government was relocated to Enshi during the 1937-45 resistance war (against Japanese invasion and occupation).
The Roman Catholic Church had the Diocese of Shinan on the territory of today's Enshi Prefecture.
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