Biodiversity Discovery and Practice To Show Chinese Wisdom
China Environment News

◆ Luo Jianwu

The Fifteenth Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity of the United States was convened in Kunming, Yunnan, and China's biodiversity conservation achievements received great attention. With the further advancement of ecological civilization construction, several initiatives for biodiversity conservation in China have been implemented and taken effect, such as the construction of national park systems, designation of redlines for ecological protection, and systematic endangered species rescuing projects were conducted, and in situ and ex situ conservation was constantly improved. Those explorations and practices are China's contribution to the global biodiversity conservation, and provide Chinese wisdom and Chinese approach to the world.

The construction of nature reserves has been continuously promoted, and the conservation of important natural ecosystems and biological resources has been strengthened, which has played a positive role in maintaining the habitats of important species. National parks such as Sanjiangyuan National Park, Giant Panda National, Northeast China Tiger and Leopard National Park, National Park of Hainan Tropical Rainforest, Wuyishan National Park, etc. have been officially set up to speed up the construction of the nature reserve system with national parks as the main body. The conservation was intensified for typical natural ecosystems such as grasslands, forests, wetlands and flagship species such as giant pandas, Siberian tigers, snow leopards and Tibetan antelopes, and close attention was paid to the conservation of precious natural landscapes and natural and cultural heritage in China, and large-scale overall conservation of important ecological areas was achieved, which has played an important role in demonstrating and leading the establishment of nature reserve systems in China.

Botanical gardens and arboretums in China have conserved 270 species of plants in the List of China's National Protected Wild Plants and China's Plant Red Book. Over 20,000 species of indigenous plants have been ex-situ conserved in 195 botanical gardens in China, accounting for about 65% of the plants and trees in China. The ex situ conservation was continuously intensified, and the collection and preservation level of biological genetic resources was significantly improved. Based on the principle of combining in-situ conservation with ex-situ conservation, the construction of national botanical garden systems in Beijing, Guangzhou and other cities was initiated. Currently, the ex situ conservation system has been increasingly mature, and it is becoming an effective supplement to in situ conservation. Many endangered wild animals and plants will be effectively conserved and restored.

Funds were raised from many parties, a series of ecological protection and restoration projects were implemented, the ecological restoration efforts were continuously strengthened, and the integrated conservation of mountains, rivers, forests, farmlands, lakes, grasslands, deserts, glaciers, and snow mountains and systematic management were promoted as a whole. The ecological deterioration trend was basically contained, the natural ecosystem was generally stable and improved, and the service function was gradually enhanced. With the deepening of the battle against pollution, the continuous improvement of eco-environmental quality will help to alleviate the pressure of biodiversity conservation.

The conference also released the Kunming Declaration, an important symbolic achievement, which promised to formulate, adopt and implement an effective "global biodiversity framework after 2020" and ensure that biodiversity will be restored by 2030 at the latest, thereby fully realizing the vision of "harmonious coexistence between man and nature" in 2050. The adoption of the Kunming Declaration reflects the determination and willingness of all countries to make practical contributions and take effective actions for the global biodiversity, and will inject a new driving force to the global ecological and environmental governance.

Author affiliation: Chinese Research Academy of Environmental Sciences