The long-suspended Hantan River dam project in South Korea will resume, after a construction delay of seven years due to strong opposition from local residents and environmental groups.

According to Factiva, South Korea’s government made the decision at its Fifth Ad Hoc Committee on Flooding Preventive Measures for Imjin River, which was presided over by Prime Minister Han Myeong-sook.

Hantan River dam will be designed to release water only when flooding occurs, while letting water follow its natural flow in a normal environment. Along with building the dam on Hantan river, a tributary to Imjin river, an undercurrent reservoir is also set to be built to control its water level in the upper reaches of the Hantan in the event of flooding. The anticipated construction site is reportedly a district linking Shinheung-ri, Changsu-myeon, Pocheon-gun, Gyeonggi and Gomun-ri, Yeoncheon-eup, and Yeoncheon-gun.

Opponents to the project, such as the joint anti-Hantan River dam construction committee of Cheorwon, Pocheon, and Yeoncheon, are still against the project, seeing the government’s construction plan as uneconomical and unreasonable.

The cost of building Hatan River dam has been estimated in the past as approximately US$810 M.