Xianju excels in biodiversity protection

chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2022-07-13

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An exhibition hall of the Xianju Biodiversity Museum, the first of its kind in Zhejiang province. [Photo/taizhou.com.cn]

Xianju county in Taizhou has achieved notable accomplishments in biodiversity conservation in recent years. 

The county covers an area of 2,000 square kilometers, 79.57 percent of which is covered by forests that are rich in biological resources. Xianju has also been hailed by experts as a "natural plant gene bank" and a "museum of animals and plants" in East China's Zhejiang province.

To date, 2,786 species of plants and animals, including 50 species of wild animals and 32 species of wild plants under State key protection, have been found in Xianju.

In 2014, the local government unveiled a 15-year action plan to strengthen biodiversity conservation. This was the first action plan of its kind rolled out by a county in China.

Since 2016, Xianju has banned all illegal hunting of wild animals and prohibited activities that interfere with the reproduction and habitats of wildlife.

Two years later, the Xianju Wildlife Protection Association was established. The association has in the past three years rescued 320 wild animals.

The county has also established cooperative ties with international NGOs such as WWF and IUCN. 

In 2017, the county obtained a low-interest loan worth 75 million euros ($75 million) from the French Development Agency to fund projects related to biodiversity protection, tourism development and low-carbon rural development launched by Xianju National Park.

In May, the Xianju Biodiversity Museum, the first of its kind in Zhejiang, was opened to the public.

The 150-million-yuan ($23 million) museum was partly funded by the French Development Agency and has an exhibition area of about 3,000 square meters that is divided into sections that showcase geological landscape, ecosystem diversity, animal diversity, plant diversity, microbial diversity and ecosystem services.

Earlier this year, Li Mengwen, a member of the Chinese women's football team, was appointed as the county's wildlife protection ambassador.