Afforestation projects have led to a dramatic drop in the annual
number of sandstorms in Tibet
Autonomous Region in southwest China.
According to the regional meteorological station, Lhasa has seen
the number of sandstorm days drop to 5.2 days this year from 53.8
days in the early 1950s.
The early 1970s to early 1980s saw increasing sandstorms in
Tibet -- peaking in 1984. Since then the number has dropped
gradually and even faster in recent years, research results have
Large-scale tree planting was launched in the mid-1960s, with
efforts increasing in the 1990s. About 13,600 hectares of new
forest are planted each year, and 26,700 hectares of hills are
fenced up for tree planting yearly.
Tibet has harnessed desert area of 25,800 hectares and
soil-eroded area totaling 100,000 hectares since the 1990s.
But experts warn that global climate warming has caused the
Qinghai-Tibet Plateau temperature to rise gradually and windy days
to reduce. This is also a major factor behind declining
(Xinhua News Agency November 21, 2004)