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10 places ruined by man-made catastrophes

stairs lined with depth gauges lead to water

Photo: xenotar/iStockPhoto

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Three Gorges, China

China's construction of the world's largest power station, the Three Gorges Dam, has been wrought with controversy. Though the dam provides clean, fossil-fuel-free energy to a nation with rapidly increasing energy needs, rising floodwaters have already transformed the once-pristine river valleys, engulfed whole villages and ancient townships, and displaced more than 1 million people, with millions more projected to be affected.