How China approach Gobi desert expansion

How China approach Gobi desert expansion

Let me share with you what is the Great Green Wall of China ! The biggest tree planting project in human history. It was launched in 1978. The year, Deng XIAO PING became China’s Supreme Leader.

They date of completion of that project is set for 2050.

The goal is to plant around 88 million acres of protected forests in a belt nearly 3000 miles long.

That in some areas is 900 miles wide.

During the first 40 years of the proposed 78-year plan, China has cultivated some 30 million hectares of forest reserves. Why go to all this trouble?

Gobi Desert is expanding exponentially, and something needs to be done to stop its rapid advance in size. The statistics are breathtaking. The Gobi is the fastest growing desert on Earth, transforming nearly 2250 miles of grassland per year into inhospitable wasteland, blanketing nearly 500,000 square miles of northern China.

This natural disaster is known as the “Yellow Dragon”, a fitting name for the sandstorms that can reach as far as Beijing choking its citizens with its swathes of grainy dust. But it’s not just the inhabitants of China that suffer the rage of the yellow dragon.

Sandstorms have been adversely affecting neighboring countries causing serious agricultural devastation in Mongolia, Japan, North Korea and South Korea.

Particles from dust storms in China have even clouded the air as far away as Colorado in the US, and the situation is only getting worse. So how effective is the plan to curb the devastating sands of the Gobi from spreading?

The Great Green Wall is not as great as it sounds. The encroaching Gobi has continued its destructive rampage, swallowing up entire villages and small cities. While according to the World Bank, the cost has been staggering, racking up some $31 billion a year in economic losses.

In China, approximately 28% of land is now classified as desert or arid, and desertification is giving rise to untold problems for more than 400 million of its population.

In the north of China, the temperature has risen by two degrees in the past 50 years. In Minqin an area in northwestern China, studies show that groundwater levels have dropped by 12 to 19 meters since the advent of the project.

Researchers studying the progress of the Great Green Wall tend to find far fewer trees planted than local governments report. Several root causes had been listed, including high rate of project management failures.

According to this study only about 15% of the trees planted since 1978 have survived. Errors have been rife throughout this 40-year period with major blunders such as:

  • planting the wrong type of tree
  • planting the right types in excessive concentrations
  • planting in places without enough water.

These major gaps have blighted the entire project. Desertification is the biggest ecological disaster that China faces. Because of this issue had been caused by men.

The problem dates back over half a century. In 1958, revered leader Chairman Mel ordered entire forces to be razed to the ground for industrial and domestic use.

The consequences have come back to plague the country in a way no one could have imagined.

Digital Laoban