Jinggang Mountain nature reserve has set a good example by encouraging local citizens to work together to protect the environment.
Li Zhengquan, director of the Longtan scenery zone, said at the beginning local citizens did not understand why it was important to protect the environment.
To help them thoroughly understand the importance of ecological protection on Jinggang Mountain, workers talked to local people in groups from day to night. Now the people living in the area not only accept the idea of protecting the environment, but also voluntarily stop visitors from destroying the area's ecological balance.
Plants in Longtan scenery zone in Jinggang Mountain, southwestern Jiangxi Province. Photo taken on June 20, 2009. [CRI]
Li told us a popular story about Jiang Meifeng, one who stopped visitors from removing a type of lichen called umbilicaria that grows on rocks.
"One time when she saw a visitor climbing up the cliff scratching umbilicaria, Jiang Meifeng felt very uncomfortable. She said even though umbilicaria can't speak, it is also a kind of life, and we should protect it. She insisted on stopping visitors from destroying umbilicaria by travelling to and fro every day along a narrow but zigzagging footpath."
Jiang fell down and was injured in an incident. Her behavior embarrassed the visitor who tried to remove the lichen, and he apologized for his behavior. Since then, more people have become willing to protect the mountain's ecological environment voluntarily.
The government of Jinggang Mountain also took a series of measures to prevent the environment in this area from being destroyed.
To control the over-spreading of urbanization, the government and 3 million local people in the area moved 30 meters away from the nature reserve. The domestic waste they produce is now treated in a more ecologically friendly way.
But the emphasis on ecological protection will influence and restrict the development of other area industries.
Chen Min, director of the Jinggang Mountain Tourism Administration, answers CRI reporters' questions in Jinggang Mountain, Jiangxi Province on June 18, 2009. [CRI]
Chen Min, director of the Jinggang Mountain Tourism Administration, said the government is trying to adjust the local industrial structure to ensure the development of the tourism in the area.
"This demands that we promote the development of the tourism industry from a pillar industry to a leading industry and develop ecologically friendly industries such as high-tech agriculture and the services industry."
Jinggang Mountain has made great progress in stimulating the development of the tourism industry without destroying ecology.
The total revenue from its tourism industry last year was 2.7 billion yuan, which greatly contributed to the city's fiscal revenue.
Thirty-six thousand people here work in the tourism industry or related businesses. This has greatly reduced the area's unemployment.
With the harmonious development of the tourism industry and environmental protection efforts, Jinggang Mountain has become the first choice of many visitors. The green mountain, fresh air and beautiful scenery make it a wonderland that many people have dreamed of. Who can resist the attractiveness of such a blessed land with gorgeous scenery?