China Protects Environment While Building Qinghai-Tibet Railway

China is making efforts to protect the ecological environment in the area where the Qinghai-Tibet Railway is under construction, a scholar on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau said over the weekend.

The foundation of the railway, being built on the world’s highest plateau, will be elevated to protect the frozen soil layer, and special areas will be designated for the free movement of wild animals, said Zheng Du, an academician of the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

Zheng, who is attending the annual academic meeting of the China Association for Science and Technology in Changchun, capital of northeast China’s Jilin Province, said that the frozen soil layer can be well protected as long as the foundation of the railway is 100 to 120 centimeters deep.

In order to protect the plants, slopes alongside the rail bed will be planted with grass, and damage to the surface vegetation will be minimized, said Zheng, who visited the construction site last month.

In addition, waste release along the railway will be strictly controlled according to regulations.

The 1,956-km railway, the first linking Tibet with the rest of China, will extend from Lhasa in Tibet to Xining, capital city of Qinghai Province in northwest China. It will be the highest railway in the world.

More than 960 km, or over four-fifths of the railway will be built at an altitude of more than 4,000 meters above sea level, and over half of it will be laid on frozen earth.

(People’s Daily 09/16/2001)

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China's Tibet

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