China sees enhanced efforts in protection of national parks

Potatso National Park, located at southwest China’s Yunnan province, is an important national wetland nature reserve. (Photo by Ding Wendong, Forest & Humankind)

By Shang Kaiyuan from People’s Daily

China has drafted standards on national reserve protection and preliminarily established relevant organizations since it piloted the national park system three years ago, said Zhang Jianlong, head of the National Forestry and Grassland Administration on the sidelines of two sessions on March 12.

The country has witnessed enhanced efforts in the protection and restoration of national parks, Zhang added.

At present, China has 10 pilot national reserves covering a total of over 200,000 square kilometers in 12 provinces and autonomous regions, including Sanjiangyuan National Park, Northeast China Tiger and Leopard National Park, Qilian Mountain National Park, and Hainan Tropical Rainforest National Park, Zhang introduced.

Illegal projects have been gradually eliminated to protect natural reserves through supervision system and law enforcement. So far, more than 100 illegal mining projects have been withdrawn from Qilian Mountain National Park, according to Zhang.

National parks have not only protected ecological environment, but also improved livelihood for local people. Now, the 10 national parks in China hire over 50,000 rangers from local communities, which both enhances supervision and contributes to local employment.

“Sangjiangyuan National Park serves as a very good example. It employs nearly 18,000 rangers from local community, offering 1,800 yuan for each ranger every month,” said Zhang, adding that such mode has lifted hundreds of thousands of people out of poverty.

Sanjiangyuan, located at the heartland of Qinghai-Tibet Plateau in northeast China, is the world’s largest national natural park with an area of 123,100 square kilometers. It is also the source of Yangtze, Yellow and Langcang Rivers. (Photo by administration bureau of Sanjiangyuan National Park)

Northeast Tiger Leopard National Park, located at the junction of Jilin province and Heilongjiang province. It is home to the most Siberian tiger and Amur leopard populations in China, and also the most important habitat and breeding area for the creatures. (Photo by Northeast Tiger and Leopard Park Administration)

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