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Ranger lets nature work

Updated: 2023-10-07 10:07 ( China Daily )
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An aerial view of farming fields nestled in the depth of mountains in Wulingyuan area. [Photo by Wu Yongbing/For China Daily]

Heritage preservation

In January 2001, the Hunan provincial authorities implemented the regulations for the protection of Wulingyuan World Natural Heritage Site, which have been revised several times.

Ecological migration and relocation in scenic areas have always been the primary challenges in the coordinated protection and development of the Wulingyuan area.

Between 1999 and 2001, Wulingyuan initiated two large-scale ecological migration and relocation projects, moving residents from the core scenic area and demolishing a total of 235,000 square meters of buildings and structures.

In May 2017, the local government issued an announcement for the third project, which is still ongoing, involving 3,087 residents and 185,100 sq m of housing.

"Wulingyuan has attached great importance to heritage conservation," says Hu Xinhua, former director of the protection office of Wulingyuan World Natural Heritage property.

"We've demolished buildings in the scenic area that violated the regulations or had a negative impact on the intrinsic value of natural heritage."

The government has also relocated noncompliant reception facilities out of the core scenic area, as well as the people involved. Now, there are no overnight services in the core area.

According to Hu, if there are construction projects, all building materials must be approved before entering the core region.

"We've put in significant efforts to protect heritage resources in Wulingyuan. Thanks to years of preservation, the lush and green hills clothed in wild profusions of vegetation are more beautiful," he says.

He says that as heritage preservation is an ongoing effort, it's necessary to improve the organizational structure to ensure a long-lasting national mechanism for sustained efficiency.

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