Nanyang receives the title of "National Forest City" at the 2018 Forest City Construction Forum held in Shenzhen on Oct 15. [Photo/WeChat: Henan Daily]
Nanyang was recognized as a national forest city by the State Administration of Forestry and Grassland at the 2018 Forest City Construction Forum held in Shenzhen, Guangdong province on Oct 15.
Having strived for the honorary title since 2016, Nanyang has invested over 6 billion yuan ($867.23 million) in afforestation and greening, creating 1,343,700 mu (89,580 hectares) of new forests. The forest coverage rate of Nanyang has now reached 47.61 percent, making it the afforestation champion of Henan province.
The city has also promoted urban greening in a variety of places including Baihe Wetland Park, on roadsides and along inland rivers. It has completed 12,500 kilometers of green passages over the past three years.
In rural areas, the city completed 33,000 mu of afforestation of farmland and built 155 public recreation centers in villages and towns. Nanyang has completed 519.9 kilometers of greening around Danjiangkou Reservoir, Yahe River Reservoir, Baihe River and other water areas. The city also carried out barren hill afforestation totalling 850,000 mu in three years, reaching a green barren mountain rate of over 95 percent.
The forest area of the city currently amounts to 882,667 hectares with the green rate of urban passageways and village forests at 90.55 percent and 43.28 percent respectively. Nanyang has also established eight national and provincial nature reserves, and 18 national and provincial forest (wetland) parks.
New plant additions to the city, such as fruit trees and flowers, have brought economic benefits to Nanyang, with the forestry industry boosting ecotourism and reducing poverty. In 2017, Nanyang received 16,013,000 tourists and acquired an ecotourism revenue of 10.17 billion yuan, lifting more than 6,200 people out of poverty.
The honor is the highest honor available in city ecological construction and an important symbol to reflect and measure the competitiveness of cities.