China’s desert-fighting region plants 445 million trees since 2012

HOHHOT (Xinhua) – Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, lying at the forefront of China’s fight against desertification, has mobilised 76.6 million volunteers to plant trees over the past seven years, local authorities said yesterday.

The campaign has planted 445 million trees to guard north China against sandstorms and desert encroachment in the period, the autonomous region’s forestry and grassland bureau said ahead of China’s Arbor Day today.

The bureau said Inner Mongolia has since 2012 beefed up its tree-planting efforts with measures such as assigning afforestation targets to local officials and encouraging volunteer participation.

The autonomous region has planted over 1.7 billion trees on about 400,000 hectares of lands since 1981, when China started to encourage the public to plant trees.