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“Forests for the Air” Project: To Conserve and Nurture Forests for a Bright Future

China: Mountains of Southwest China

Where is the Project Site?

In the far reaches of southwest China are numerous mountain ranges and gorges that constitute the headwaters of a river system spreading throughout Asia and providing a vital source of water. Diverse and rich ecosystems have nurtured many unique species of wildlife including the giant panda. However, the forests are rapidly receding due to human development. Despite reforestation efforts, problems like livestock grazing and the cutting of trees for firewood are putting forests in a critical situation. Other problems include farming, which places a huge burden on the region’s soil, and wildlife poaching. The project covers the village of Ganpu in Aba Prefecture, Sichuan Province, China. About 1,000 ethnic Tibetans live in this village.

What’s the Project About?

The project will promote agroforestry, under which mutually beneficial development of forestry, agriculture, and livestock raising will create more productive use of the land and more diverse livelihoods for people. The aim of the project is to improve the livelihood of locals while achieving sustainable use of the land. Surveys are also being conducted on changes in the productivity of the land in order to gauge the effectiveness of the project, and a PR campaign is educating the public on matters such as climate change and farming methods with minimal environmental impact.

© Conservation International/photo by Biao Yang

Local Wildlife: Giant Panda Ailuropoda melanoleuca

This endangered species lives in a very limited area in China. Their habit has reached a critical stage as forests are cleared for agriculture and trees cut down for firewood.

“A Word from Field Staff”

Biao Yang
Project Manager, Conservation International - China

Biao Yang Project Manager, Conservation International - China

China continues to struggle in its effort to carefully balance economic development and environmental protection. We are grateful to receive the support from Daikin, as it will enable us to execute innovative solutions to improve the health of China’s critical forest while fostering sustainable livelihoods for the local communities. In this project, we designed an agro-forestry model, an integrated approach combining forestry, agriculture and animal husbandry to support local communities livelihood and better manage the forest. The agro-forestry model will also help to improve soil fertility and its capacity of carbon sequestration which will improve the capacity of climate change adaption of local community.

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