Recently I have been seeing a lot of Facebook and Twitter post about the potential failure of the Three Gorges Dam in China. Most of the posts are speculating about total failure of the dam. This Twitter thread is a case in point:
I think that looking at a total dam failure potentially misses the more likely partial failure and I thought that I would look at some failures that don’t involve the total collapse of the dam, but are still very bad. Here is a simulation of what could happen if the dam fails.
To call it potential disaster is understating the case. A small dam failure in Jonestown PA is still talked about a century later as a major disaster. If Three Gorges fails, the scope of the disaster will be incalculable.