Nation vows to safeguard wetlands
The China State Forest Administration and theWWF, one of the world’s largest independent conservation organizations, signed a memorandum of understanding on Wednesday on Shanghai’s Chongming Island, their first MOU to include coastal wetland protection.
China has made efforts to protect wetlands across the country, including restoration andprotectionprojectsandpromoting awareness, according to the StateForest Administration.
In the past decade, more than 200 billion yuan ($31.4 billion) has been invested in protecting and restoring wetlands across China, according to the administration.
In Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, more than 10 billion yuan has been invested in restoring its Xixi wetland, which now has 345 kinds of plants, 64 kinds of birds and 226 kinds of insects, according to the city’s forest administration authorities.
Under the agreement, the WWFwillsupport the administration in research activities with other member countries in the East Asian-Australasian Flyway Partnership, a program that aims at protecting migratory water birds and the places they live. WWF will do monitoring and protection work on migratory shorebirds species in China’s coastal wetlands, and continue its work on estuary wetlands including Shanghai’s Chongming Dongtan Natural Reserve and Fujian’sMinjiang.
“China has committed itself to the protection of a crucial part of the coastline,” said Wenwei Ren, director of the Yangtze footprint program of WWFChina.
Researchers said that new technologies such as remote sensing and monitoring by dronesarebeingusedtomonitor and protect wetlands, and integrated approaches have been takentoensurethedevelopment and safety of animals, birds and many other species that rely on the safety ofwetlands.
According to Ouyang Zhiyun, an environmental researcher with the China Academy of Sciences, protection of wetlands and species will be done in conjunction with urban development, construction plans, tourism and mining activities.
China has committed itself to the protection of a crucial part of the coastline.”
Dutch King Willem-Alexander watches birds on Shanghai’s Chongming island on Wednesday. The king, who is on a state visit to China, witnessed the signing of a memorandum of understanding between the China State Forestry Administration and WWF.