Hi Jiangsu Trip / NEWS

Industrial area transformed into stunning forest park

By CHEN MEILING |  CHINA DAILY |  Updated:2019-12-25

The once-polluted area along the Yangtze River in Nantong, Jiangsu province, is now known for its forest coverage rate of above 80 percent and pastoral riverside scenery thanks to local efforts to improve the environment.

Opened in January, the Wolf Mountain National Forest Park has an area of 17 square kilometers. Stretching 14 km along the Yangtze, it has five mountains, botanical gardens, grasslands, forests, flowers and birds. The attraction is an impressive way for Nantong to show its natural beauty.

Just two years ago, this area was a bulk cargo wharf with multiple factories, trade companies and residential housing, which polluted the air and river.

After a national call for all cities in the Yangtze River Delta region to maintain an eco-friendly environment and promote greener development of the river, Nantong took action.

It planted two million trees, moved about 200 companies and relocated about 400 families along the riverside. This has both improved the surrounding environment and lifted production efficiency, said Shao Wenjian, deputy director of Nantong Wolf Mountain holiday resort management office.

"The Yangtze River is the mother river of Chinese people. It's a responsibility for upstream and downstream cities to protect it," he said. He added that improved ecology can raise people's level of happiness.

The park, open to the public for free, welcomes crowds three to four times larger than before every day, according to Shao.

He said the region is also responsible for local drinking water and it prohibits any commercial or residential activities within 1,000 meters upstream or downstream of the intake.

Despite the rain, participants of the "Hi Jiangsu" media tour were busy taking photos on the wooden deck where the intake can be seen.

Kwak Ye-ji, reporter from AJU News in South Korea, told local media she was happy to see the Yangtze River. "Before, I only heard of it. It's much wider than I imagined," she added.

Dominic Galeon, a writer from the Manila Bulletin in the Philippines, said the local government has attached great importance to the protection of the environment and taken many measures that have proved effective, which impressed him.

Jiangsu province, which plays a key role in the Yangtze River Delta region, is working on the ecological conservation and restoration of the Yangtze. It aims to promote high-quality development of the Jiangsu segment of the river in terms of production, people's livelihood and ecological environment, according to Lou Qinjian, Party secretary of Jiangsu province, at a conference on protecting the Yangtze in April.


The Wolf Mountain National Forest Park in Nantong, Jiangsu province, features a lush landscape and riverside views. XU CONGJUN/FOR CHINA DAILY


Journalists from overseas take a photo beside the Yangtze River in the park. CHINA DAILY

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