(Yicai Global) Sept.12 -- China has made remarkable achievements in desertification prevention and control over the years, and was able to achieve zero growth in land desertification over the last year, Liu Dongsheng, deputy director of the country’s State Forestry Administration (SFA), said at a press briefing at a UN conference on the topic.
China has reduced its desert land mass by 2,424 square kilometers a year on average since the turn of the century, Liu said. This represents a significant improvement compared to an average annual increase per year of 10,400 square kilometers at the end of the 1990s.
Sandy land areas, where desertification is less severe, have also been reduced by 1,980 square kilometers per year over the same period, compared to an annual increase of 3,436 square kilometers at the end of the last century, state-owned news agency Xinhua reported.
"China plans to bring more than 50 percent of its sandy land under control by 2020, and it will be fully managed by 2050." Liu said. The nation will continue to adopt scientific and technological innovations and maintain prevention efforts in order to achieve this goal.
The country will also look to the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification, as well as the Belt and Road Initiative and other platforms, in order to nurture international cooperation regarding desertification prevention and control.
China's reversal in the desertification process can be seen in the emergence of a large oasis area in the country’s seventh largest desert, the Kubuqi.
The government, the public and companies have made great efforts on this front, said Prady Munga, deputy executive secretary of the UN Convention to Combat Desertification.