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Hoh Xil under threat (3)

(Global Times)

09:54, August 30, 2011

Preservation efforts

Though experts argue that encouraging the public to challenge vulnerable reserves harms these special regions, in recent years, tours to explore nature in these areas has never stopped.

Sanjiangyuan (the source region of Yangtze, Yellow and Lancang rivers) in Qinghai Province is frequently used as the destination.

In 2008 a group of tourists in Shenzhen, Guangdong Province, paid a visit to Sanjiangyuan by car, claiming to advocate charity donations and to conduct an environmental investigation.

Vehicle pollution and garbage thrown away by the tourists pollute local air and water, unnatural noises could scare and disturb wild animals, while the damage caused by cars and tourists trampling through the area could cause further harm to the local vegetation, said Wu. "Most of us tried to go there as seldom as possible for fear of disturbing the animals or further damaging the environment."

Commercial enterprises could choose other methods if they really wanted to protect the environment, said Feng. "Such as funding to help promote the scientific research capability in the Reserve."

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