EXPLORING THE YANGTZE

From 1986-1994, Mr. Yangxin made five expeditions to explore the Yangtze source area for research and photo-taking. During this eight year period, he saw with his own eyes a number of ecological problems that have developed in the area. The ecological health of the grassland has been degraded through desertification, graciers have shrunk on a large scale, and a large number of wild animals have been killed by poachers.

At the end of 1994, Mr. Yangxin initiated a project aiming to protect the environment of the source area of Yangtze River: PROTECT YANGTZE SOURCE, LOVE OUR MOTHER NATURE. This five-year plan was to organize sceintists to investigate four times into the three source rivers of Yangtze and Tongtian River basin and to build four natural protection stations in these river basins. Based on the stations, scientists, local officals, and volunteers worked together to work out more pragmatic and effective protection plans and curb poaching activities. The plan also included summoning volunteers in China and from abroad to make known the need of environmental protection among local herdsmen and passers-by. Publicity was sought for the ecological situation in Yangtze source area through making a TV series and publishing books raising awareness of and support for the protection of the source of the Yangtze. An important goal of the project was to guide the public to join activities about environmental protection and thus to promote the concern for environmental protection ampong the general public.

In August, 1997, Yangxin's book THE YANGTZE SPIRIT was published. The book was sold to raise money for construction of the protection station. The first protection station, Suonandajie Natural Protection Station, at the foot of the Kunlun Mountains, east of Hohxil, was completed 10th, Sep.1997. This station became the forward position of the project's anti-poaching efforts in Hohxil basin (Hohxil area refers to the Qumar river, northern source of Yangtze River) and surrounding area. At the average altitude of 4500 meters, it is now the largest uninhabited area in China, yet it is the haunt of such rare wild animals as pantholop hodgsoni, wild yaks, and asiatic wild asses. Since lots of poachers crowed into this area, the number of wild animals dropped sharply. So the protection station was built to help the local government protect wild animals effectively in a large area.

Now Mr. Yangxin is working for the implementation of the five year plan for the Green River Association, known formally as the "Source River Environmental Protection Association (Qinghai province)."

Learn more about the Yangtze River

Center for Global Environmental Education
Hamline University Graduate School of Education
1536 Hewitt Avenue, St. Paul, MN 55104-1284
Phone: 651-523-2480 Fax: 651-523-2987
© 1999 CGEE. All Rights Reserved.