Beijing Sketches Out Tree Belts for Environmental Protection

Beijing has vowed to establish three large-scale tree belts in the next five years to improve the city's eco-system.

The project, which will require annual investment of 600 million yuan (US$72.3 million) from the municipal government, is considered Beijing's largest afforestation effort ever.

Planned for the mountain areas in the western, northern and eastern parts of Beijing, a tree belt, with a total areas of 10, 400 sq. km, will push the forest cover rate of the mountain areas up to 70 percent.

Trees will also planted along the banks of five major rivers and ten road arteries in Beijing, with a combined length of 1,000 km. Upon the completion of this green belt project, the forest cover rate in Beijing's plain areas is expected to grow by 3.5 percentage points.

The third green belt will be built between Beijing's Third Ring Road and Fourth Ring Road, and it will cover some 240 sq. km.

Beijing has been working hard in recent years to improve the local environment. The city finished building nearly 2,700 hectares of green space last year and planted a total of 112,000 hectares of forest in the past five years. Its forest cover rate jumped to the current 43 percent from 36 percent five years ago.

People's Daily Online ---