XI'AN: Poverty-stricken farmers and the ecological environment in an area of
Shaanxi are set to benefit from a range of new measures.
Zhang Wei, a vice-governor in charge of an anti-poverty drive in the inland
province in Northwest China, said the Qinling Mountain area would see a range of
improvements in the coming years.
"In the period of the 11th Five-Year Plan (2006-10), we will focus our
efforts to help poor farmers living in the mountainous region and at the same
time protect the ecological environment there," he said.
Though economic development and environmental protection can sometimes be
contradictory, especially in less developed regions such as Shaanxi, the local
government hopes to benefit both by taking extensive measures, the vice-governor
The local governments of Shangluo, Ankang and Hanzhong, which are located
around the mountain, are currently working on green projects to improve the
local economic development.
"We are making efforts to produce more than 1,500 kinds of local products
such as walnut, Chinese chestnut, persimmon and edible fungus, which will give
local farmers more income and provide better protection to the ecological
environment," said Shangluo Mayor Wei Zengjun.
Shangluo has about 500,000 people, about one-fifth of its total population,
living without enough food and clothing.
The local government plans to improve their living conditions by developing
industries of Chinese medicines, tea, wine, food and tourism with them, the
Like Shangluo, Hanzhong and Ankang are also carrying out such projects, Zhang
Qinling Mountain has one of the richest areas of wildlife in China, according
to Hang Wenxuan, an official with Shaanxi Provincial Environment Protection
With a total area of 57,900 square kilometres, the mountain is China's main
water resource for the central line of the South-North Water Diversion Project,
the official said.
But in the past 50 years, the environment in Qinling Mountain has been
damaged with economic development and increasing human