Dongfeng Weir was built during the early Qing Dynasty and first named Pilu Weir. It was located on the left bank of Qingyijiang River, a tier three tributary of Yangtze River, in the Jiajiang county, Sichuan province. Dongfeng Weir is regarded as an outstanding example of sustainable contribution to ecological conservation and development in its mission for a period of more than 350 years.
The design and construction of the weir exemplifies the ancient Chinese philosophy of harmony with nature. Dongfeng Weir consists of the 12 km main diversion canal, two secondary canals diverting into four by-canals, one tunnel, eight aqueducts, 19 water -gates and other supporting facilities.
Before the construction of Dongfeng Weir, Jiajiang county was drought prone. However, since the completion of works in 1662, sufficient irrigation water supply has ensured agriculture stabilization and social development. Its irrigated area has expanded more than 10-fold from 467 hectares to 4667 hectares, covering five towns and 51 villages.
Nowadays, Dongfeng Weir is managed jointly by the local government as well as beneficiaries. The local administration is in charge of the maintenance of the general canals and branch canals, while the water user association is responsible for the sublateral canals. In 2014, Dongfeng Weir was recognized as a World Heritage Irrigation Structure by the International Commission on Irrigation and Drainage.