From “virtual energy plucking” to national parks

BEIJING, June 2, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — A news report from on China’s biodiversity conservation:

What’s your morning routine? Brush your teeth, take a shower and get dressed? In China, many people add an extra first step: Reach for the cellphone and pluck virtual “green energy”.

These “green energy” balls come from one’s low-carbon behaviors from the previous day, for example, walking or cycling instead of driving, and refusing disposable chopsticks or cutlery. After accumulating and plucking a certain amount of “energy”, the software will plant a real tree for you. Besides these, you could also “patrol” the preserved areas online to learn more about wildlife and do your bit to help protect them. The golden snub-nosed monkey is one of the animals that you can spot in your “patrols”. Not long ago, the Catalogue of Life China 2022 Annual Checklist (the checklist) was released, featuring the golden snub-nosed monkey as a signature animal. Since 2008, the checklist has been updated and released every year. Compared with the 2021 checklist, the 2022 version added 10,343 species, with the total number of species now standing at 138,293.

Besides the increase in biodiversity richness, in recent years there have also been pleasant news about rare wildlife being spotted after years of disappearance. All these bear witness to China’s efforts in biodiversity preservation, and reflects improvements in the natural environment that carry the habitats of these living creatures. With “small tricks” like plucking energy and patrolling protected zones, ordinary citizens have subtly grown more conscious of protecting the environment and been provided with a smart channel to do their bit in protecting biodiversity.

Of course, biodiversity conservation in a vast country cannot be fully achieved without systematic frameworks and macro-level designs. With over 6 decades of experience in building natural preservation areas under its belt, China started piloting national parks in 2015. Six years later, the first batch of national parks was officially established, including the Giant Panda National Park, Northeast China Tiger and Leopard National Park, and Hainan Tropical Rainforest National Park. This year, more national parks will be established in regions like the Tibetan Plateau. The China National Botanical Garden was also established in April this year as the first state-level botanical garden. Moreover, The Wild Animal Conservation Law of the People’s Republic of China, which came into effect in 1989, has seen several revisions; on June 1, 2022, the Wetlands Conservation Law of the People’s Republic of China was also enacted. From laws to systems, covering a multitude of species and their habitats, China has built a strong safety net for biodiversity conservation and environment protection.

Biodiversity is vital to the entire planet. In 1981, China joined the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora. For over four decades, China has been committed to the cause. Cross-border cooperation with countries like Russia and Laos on biodiversity protection have been carried out; A British expert was engaged to study and preserve tropical plants with Chinese experts. Over 100 staff in Xishuangbanna Botanical Garden are expats. The efforts on biodiversity protection have been extended beyond national borders.

Harmony with nature is the essence of humanity’s future development. Each individual and nation can make a difference with their unique contributions. We look forward to more meaningful cooperation and fruitful outcomes on biodiversity conservation, and we hope our Earth will become an even more vigorous planet to live in.

China Mosaic

From “virtual energy plucking” to national parks