Songhua River, just west of Harbin. Oxbow lakes are common sights along the sides of the river.
|Native name||Native Name: ᠰᡠᠩᡤᠠᡵᡳ|
ᡠᠯᠠ (sunggari ula)
Songhua River is shown in a darkish blue color.
|Alternative Chinese name|
|Manchu script||ᠰᡠᠩᡤᠠᡵᡳ ᡠᠯᠠ|
The Songhua River (also Haixi or Xingal, formerly Sunggari) is one of the primary rivers of China, and the largest tributary of the Amur River. It flows about 1,434 kilometres (891 mi) from the Changbai Mountains on the China–North Korea border through China's northeastern Jilin and Heilongjiang provinces.
From there it flows north, to be interrupted by the Baishan, Hongshi and Fengman hydroelectric dams. The Fengman Dam forms a lake that stretches for 62 kilometres (39 mi). Below the dam, the Second Songhua flows north through Jilin, then northwest until it is joined by its largest tributary, the Nen River, near Da'an, to create the Songhua proper.
The Songhua turns east through Harbin, and after the city, it is joined from the south by the Ashi River, which gave its name to the Jurchen Jin Dynasty (12th–13th century), and then by the Hulan River from the north.
The river freezes from late November until March. It has its highest flows when the mountain snow melts during the spring thaw. The river is navigable up to Harbin by medium-sized ships. Smaller craft can navigate the Songhua up to Jilin and the Nen River up to Qiqihar.
Cities along the river include:
In November 2005, the river was contaminated with benzene, leading to a shutdown of Harbin's water supply. The spill stretched 80 kilometres (50 mi) and eventually reached the Amur (Heilong) River on the China–Russia border. On July 28, 2010, several thousand barrels from two chemical plants in China's Jilin City were washed away by floods. Some of them contained 170 kilograms (370 lb) of explosive material like trimethylsilyl chloride and hexamethyldisiloxane. In 2016, the part near the city of Jilin was affected by a minor flood.
- ), National Geographic Society (U.S (2008). National Geographic Atlas of China, p. 36. ISBN 9781426201363.
- [http://www.riversnetwork.org/rbo/index.php/river-blogs/north-asia/item/4614-amur-river-basin-watersheds-map Amur river basin at Rivers Network
- National Conditions: Main Rivers accessed October 21, 2010.
- "Water pollution in China alarming, CCTV.com".
- China By Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, p.245. 2007. ISBN 9789264031159.
- Khabarovsk Region prevents poisoned Sungari water from reaching Amur, Jul 30, 2010, Moscow Time
- (in Russian)Defence lines were opened in attempt to intercept the barrels with chemicals, RIA Novosti, 30.07.2010
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