Beijing sees more greenery, fewer sandstorms over past 20 years

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, June 18, 2020
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Beijing has planted more than 569,333 hectares of forest over the past two decades as part of a program to curb desertification, local authorities said Wednesday.

Thanks to the project, the forest cover in Beijing's mountainous areas has reached 58.8 percent, an increase of 19 percentage points from 2000, according to the Beijing Gardening and Greening Bureau.

In areas covered by the project, soil erosion has reduced and there are fewer floods and mudslides, the bureau said.

Beijing used to be hit often by sandstorms, which led to the desertification of 58,000 hectares in the 1990s.

A national afforestation project targeted at dealing with the source of sandstorms in Beijing and neighboring Tianjin Municipality was launched in 2000.

The capital city has since seen a steady decline in sandy weather in spring, from 26 days in the 1950s to five to seven days at the turn of the century to three days after 2010, according to Beijing meteorological bureau.

In the coming two years, more than 1,333 hectares of greenery will be added in Beijing as part of the second phase of the project which continues until 2022. 

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