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ORIGINAL FRENCH ARTICLE: La grande muraille est un livre pédagogique

by Zhongyang Gu, Journalist at the Quotidien du peuple

The Great Wall is a Guidebook

Translated Friday 10 April 2015, by Kody Bootsman

The goal of this unifying project and genuine symbol of the ecological restoration of China, the Great Green Wall project of China, also known as the “Three North”, is strengthening the fragile ecology of northern China.

The goal of this unifying project and genuine symbol of the ecological restoration of China, the Great Green Wall project of China, also known as the “Three North”, is strengthening the fragile ecology of northern China.

The Three North project started in November 1978 and encompasses 13 provinces and administrative regions from the northwest, north and northeast of the country. The construction zone of the project is 4.069 million km2, which represents 42.4% of the total surface area of China. The project is planned in three steps and eight phases with a goal of 35.08 million hectares of reforestation. The objective, from now until 2050, for these three regions is to increase the tree cover by 15% and the volume of established forests by 4.27 billion m2.

To date, more than half the project has been achieved. Tree cover has increased from 5.05% to 12.4%. The volume of reforestation has gone from 720 thousand m2 to 1.44 billion m2 with the restoration of thousands of square kilometres of deforested lands, for an annual average of 1,500 km2.

The insistence of environmental authorities, faced with urgency and increased frequency of ecological catastrophes in that zone, has turned the Great Green Wall project into an ecological construction and key national project that is without precedent for China’s ecological governance. The project also aims to promote the various steps in the development of forestry as well as the government’s ecological management.

The restoration and management of forests combine to form an ecological and economic development model of the windbreak system. The success of the project shows the firm determination and strong capability of the Chinese government to protect the environment and emphasize sustainable development. It presents the image of China as a responsible power on the international scene, a power that is conscious of the importance of global ecological security for the future of humanity.
The Great Wall is a guidebook. A look at the past management of the three regions of the North indicates, faced with the harsh reality of their environment, that immediate and continuous steps must be made to better the ecology and fight natural disasters.
The Great Wall also shows that it is possible to give fragile zones a new dynamic by reconciling the relationship between human and nature with the concept of ecology, as well as by improving the environment while respecting the laws of nature, the economy and society.

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