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China sees shrinking deserts: official
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13:20, July 17, 2007

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The Chinese land vulnerable to desertification is dwindling by about 1200 square kilometers per year thanks to years of afforestation efforts, Zhu Lieke, vice director of the State Forestry Administration (SFA) told a press conference on Tuesday.

China now tops the world in afforestation with 54 million hectares of man-made forest, according to Jia Zhibang, head of the SFA who is also present at the press conference.

The nation has been promoting voluntary tree-planting and forestation, closing the forest area to allow for natural regeneration and fostering of young forests, said Jia.

Since China began advocating voluntary tree-planting and forestation 26 years ago, the Chinese people have planted 49.2 billion trees, he added.

The Chinese government will endeavor to double the forest annual growth in 30 to 50 years, to one billion cubic meters, Jia said.

Source: Xinhua

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