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Plan in Pipeline to Support Biodiversity Conservation Strategy

Source: Science and Technology | 2024-05-31 15:34:45 | Author: TANG Zhexiao

Mummy Hainan gibbon with its kid in south China's Hainan province. (PHOTO: XINHUA)

By TANG Zhexiao

China is formulating a plan for implementing biodiversity conservation projects, to support the implementation of the national strategy and action plan.

Minister of ecology and environment Huang Runqiu, at an event to mark the International Day for Biological Diversity on May 22.

According to the National Forestry and Grassland Administration (NFGA), the plan, aims to save key endangered species such as the giant pandas, Hainan gibbons and orchids,  accelerate the construction of national botanical gardens, build rare and endangered species protection and research centers, breeding bases and other platforms, and promote the recovery of wild populations of endangered species.

The global theme of this year’s biodiversity day was "Be Part of the Plan", which was a call to action to all stakeholders to halt and reverse the loss of biodiversity, and support the implementation of the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework (GBF), according to the United Nations Environment Programme.

As one of the first signatories and ratifiers of the Convention on Biological Diversity, China has always placed high importance on biodiversity conservation, Huang said.

China has issued more than 40 policy documents related to the construction of an ecological civilization, and released or revised more than 30 laws and regulations on the protection of the environment, wild animals, marine environment and other sectors.

In January, the National Biodiversity Conservation Strategy and Action Plan (2023-2030) was released to improve the level of biodiversity management. It sets four priority areas for action: mainstreaming biodiversity, addressing the threat of biodiversity loss, sustainable use of biodiversity, and modernizing biodiversity governance capacity.

David Cooper, acting executive secretary of the UN Convention on Biodiversity, said this guideline is China’s concrete measure to implement the GBF.

Data show that 90 percent of China's terrestrial ecosystem types and 74 percent of wildlife populations under state key protection have been effectively protected, according to the Catalogue of Life China 2024 Annual Checklist, an annually updated version of the national species database.

The giant panda is a bear species endemic to China. According to the NFGA, the total number of wild giant pandas has jumped from about 1,100 in the 1980s to nearly 1,900 today.

Hainan gibbons, the rarest primate found only in Hainan in south China, have been listed as critically endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. The number of Hainan gibbons has increased from less than 10 in 1980s to six groups of 37 individuals as of 2023. It is the only successful case of natural restoration among the world's less than 10 critically endangered species.

Meanwhile, as one of the first countries to sign the Convention on Biological Diversity, China is deepening international cooperation and making contributions to addressing the global challenge to biodiversity.

The Sino-Africa Joint Research Center, located on the campus of Kenya's Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture And Technology, is providing Sino-African cooperation in biodiversity research and conservation.

China and France agreed on May 14 to promote cooperation between China's Giant Panda National Park and the Pyrenees National Park in France. Areas of cooperation are set to include biodiversity monitoring, flagship species protection, community co-management, education, and personnel training.

According to Huang, in the future, China will formulate biodiversity evaluation standards, carry out the fifth national ecological status change survey and assessment, and dynamically monitor major ecological restoration projects like the Three-North Shelterbelt Forest Program, which creates forest strips to prevent encroachment by the Gobi Desert in the North.

Editor: 汤哲枭

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