Stephen Hesse, 24 March 2013
Launched in January, this five-year project — co-financed by the provincial government, the UNDP and the GEF — seeks to increase the efficiency of PA management in this region where wetlands cover 6 percent of the area, including rivers, flooded grasslands and both freshwater and saline lakes.
“Important ecological services provided here affect 5.5 million people locally and nearly all China’s population,” the project’s International Technical Adviser, Marc Foggin, wrote in an article. “Altogether, the rivers that originate on the Tibetan Plateau affect over one-third of the world’s human population. Many rare and endangered wildlife species live in the province, including its high grasslands as well as the arid Qaidam Basin and rugged Qilian Mountains,” he notes.
Mountainous Qinghai’s climate is cold, dry and windy, with long winters and short summers; and its ecosystems are fragile.