China Central Television (CCTV) is to shoot a 10-part series on the source region of the country's three major rivers in an effort to increase the awareness of ecological risks to the unspoiled area.
It will be the first television program to record in an all-round way the natural beauty and culture of the region, CCTV and the provincial government of Qinghai, where the rivers rise, announced at a joint press conference on Thursday.
The sources region of the three rivers -- the Yangtze, Yellow and Lancang -- is located about 4,500 meters above the sea level on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau in northwest China.
The Chinese government approved in 2000 the establishment of the Three Rivers Source Reserve -- the nation's largest nature reserve covering 318,000 sq km, an area slightly bigger than Italy.
With a unique geological structure, landscape, and flora and fauna, the sources region is regarded as a prime science and tourism site, a provincial official said.
Environmental damage, including soil erosion and a resultant increase in the amount of silt carried downstream by the three rivers, has been monitored in the region in recent years.
Experts blame both natural and man-made factors for the worsening situation, including overgrazing, deforestation and unlimited harvesting of plants for herbal use.
The 6,300-km Yangtze River, the longest in China, flows through nine provinces, an autonomous region and Shanghai Municipality, before it empties into the East China Sea.
The Yellow River, China's second largest, traverses seven provinces, two autonomous regions and empties into the Bohai Sea, in Shandong Province, east China.
The Lancang River rises from the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, and flows into Yunnan Province where it becomes the renowned Mekong River running through southeast Asia.
(Xinhua News Agency August 9, 2002)