Interview: China's anti-desertification experience conducive to global green development, UN official says

(Xinhua) 14:15, June 19, 2023

BEIJING, June 18 (Xinhua) -- With a commitment to promoting green development through Belt and Road cooperation, China's experience in combating desertification contributes to global green development, a UN official has said.

China has made scientific advancements in desertification control over the past decades, having established a solid barrier for ecological security, said Jia Xiaoxia, program officer at the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification, when attending the 3rd Taklimakan Desert Forum recently held in Korla, northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.

The latest data from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, a UN body, showed drylands currently cover 46.2 percent of the global land area and are home to 3 billion people. However, these lands are highly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, and are warming twice as fast as humid areas.

Speaking to Xinhua on the sidelines of the forum, Jia highlighted China's early efforts in ecological restoration and protection, which have enabled the country to accumulate extensive experience in this field.

For example, Xinjiang, which has the largest arid area in China, has achieved remarkable success in desertification control over the past decades through such measures as precision agriculture, integrated watershed management, afforestation and reducing overgrazing.

Jia mentioned that Africa's initiative of "Green Great Wall" was inspired during a visit to China by African officials and experts some 30 years ago, when they witnessed the benefits of China's massive afforestation program -- the Three-North Shelterbelt Forest Program, and its achievements in ecological restoration.

Apart from providing economic support, China has also dispatched researchers and experts to facilitate technological exchanges and advance the African afforestation program.

Nowadays, China is engaged in technological cooperation with the regions involved in the African project by utilizing big data applications and planning, Jia said.

Through satellites and other means to observe, collect, calculate and analyze data, China has also helped African countries better understand the characteristics and patterns of their land, climate and other aspects, advancing the efforts to prevent and control desertification, she added.

(Web editor: Zhang Kaiwei, Liang Jun)


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