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An agenda to look for more lucid waters and Lush mountain in China

A push for more lucid waters and lush mountains in China and beyond

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The Gobi Desert at the eastern foot of Helan Mountain, in northwest China’s Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, was once deemed an “agricultural forbidden zone,” characterized by ubiquitous gravel and barren soil.

To improve local conditions, the local government has taken several measures, including population resettlement. In Xihaigu, a mountainous region, more than 1.3 million residents were relocated. Those who left their farms were provided with decent jobs elsewhere.

Thanks to extensive ecological protection and restoration efforts, 23,000 hectares of the Gobi Desert have been turned into “green corridors” by developing wine-grape growing bases and planting shelter forest belts. Today, it’s home to 200 wineries.

In the meantime, 130,000 jobs were created for the local population. Tourism is also booming. For residents there, the once “uninhabitable” region is now a “land of hope.”

For Yuan Yuan, owner of a vineyard built on an old quarry, “green is the new gold.”

“The environment here used to be very adverse. Through ecological restoration, we now have clear waters and verdant mountains to support our industry,” Yuan said.

In recent years, China has paid growing attention to environmental and ecological protection and is working to boost economic development in an environmentally friendly way.

Nearly two decades ago, Chinese President Xi Jinping, who was then the secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Zhejiang Provincial Committee, first introduced the concept that “lucid waters and lush mountains are invaluable assets.” Since then, this idea has received growing popularity among the Chinese public.

To enhance public awareness and actions to protect the ecological environment, Beijing designated Aug. 15 as its National Ecology Day earlier this year.

Erik Solheim, who served as the executive director of the United Nations Environment Programme, was impressed by China’s advocacy of living in harmony with nature.

“Inspiring people to take better care of the nation … it’s amazing,” he said.

He applauded China’s proactive measures, such as implementing a fishing ban in the Yangtze River, promoting tree planting and protecting endangered species, adding that the nation’s commitment and achievements in these areas warrant global recognition.

China’s experience in ecological protection and green development will undoubtedly be valuable for Uzbekistan, which aims to adopt green technologies and sustainable and ecological growth as a crucial component of its economy, said Tulanbay Kurbanov, an Uzbek international relations expert.

With the help of Chinese workers, green energy is powering Jordan’s economic development.

Mahmoud Alhamaideh has worked at a wind power station in Jordan for five years. He told Xinhua that since a joint project with China’s Three Gorges International Corporation was launched in 2021, the station’s overall power generation efficiency has increased by 2 percent.

He noted that the project is expected to power approximately 30,000 Jordanian households each year and contribute to reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 75,000 tons and water consumption by 130,000 tons annually.

Chinese companies always prioritize environmental protection when undertaking projects.

So was a pipeline project funded and developed by the China National Petroleum Corporation in the African country of Benin. To protect local forest reserves, the project team rerouted the pipeline by an additional 310 meters, effectively bypassing the forest reserve without hampering the construction progress.

As Tuesday marks China’s first National Ecology Day, Xi urged the country’s citizens to act as role models in practicing the concept that lucid waters and lush mountains are invaluable assets.

For Abdulaziz Alshaabani, a Saudi Arabian expert on international affairs, Chinese cities are like gardens. He marveled at the significant transformations in Xihaigu during a recent trip to China.

He said that China’s efforts in promoting ecological civilization make it more beautiful and provide valuable experience for others in combating desertification and reducing carbon emissions.

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