China’s dramatic growth has brought staggering air and water #pollution. So some people are surprised to learn of a major initiative to protect more than one-quarter of the Chinese mainland — an area almost the size of France, Spain, Turkey, Germany and Italy combined, totalling more than 2.4 million square kilometres.
Called the China Ecological Conservation Red Line (ECRL), the initiative began in 2011, building on ten years of local practice and drawing on economic, population, ecological and other government and academic data. The ECRL implements strategies I developed in 2010 to identify and protect important ecological systems. Plans are already in place for 15 provinces, including Beijing and the Yangtze River economic area. The rest will be completed by the end of the year.