China’s Eco Forum Global Guiyang will begin today focusing on the theme of “ecological civilization.”
The event is expected to host around five hundred guests including Chinese and foreign political and diplomatic leaders, business leaders, scholars and NGO heads. Li Zhanshu, Chairman of the National People’s Congress, will attend.
Expect an early topic of discussion to center on China’s new protected-areas system of land preservation—to be implemented later this year— which creates a system more closely mirroring the national parks system of other countries. Beijing hopes that these protections will help prevent ecological destruction while allowing a greater degree of eco-tourism. Ecotourism is a burgeoning industry in China, but experts predict that up to 33 million tourists could come to visit China’s ecological attractions every year.
Despite these efforts, China’s largest ecological challenges stem from its reliance on carbon-intensive industries which cause widespread water pollution and soil contamination. While these industries still drives China’s economic growth, Beijing’s recent pushes towards cleaning up the nation’s image as the world’s largest polluter mean that more initiatives like this one are likely in the future. Expect additional attempts at organizing international anti-pollution efforts as well as emissions-reduction legislation as this push continues.
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Chris is a Content Editor and Analyst for the Daily Brief. His writing focuses on the political economies of North America, the United Kingdom and Oceania.