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《The Second Annual Conference》



Xia Baolong: Making Due Contribution to the Realization of A Common Ecological Homeland

 

Release date:2013-05-20

 

Xia Baolong, Secretary of Zhejiang Provincial Committee of the Communist Party of China

 

Abstract: We do not deliberately pursue a rapid growth of GDP, but rather focus on economic transformation and upgrading to leave enough space for environment protection even when the GDP growth is slow.


The source of Taihu Lake sits at the southern foot of Tianmu Mountain in a scenic spot called Longshu Ditch in Zhejiang Province, Hangzhou Lin'an City. Here I would like to tell you a little story first.


Longshu Ditch is a paradise for wildlife with its towering walls and overhanging waterfalls. The village of Baisha, where Longshu Ditch is located, is a small mountain village with less than 400 families. Before the 1990s, many villagers in Baisha Village made their living by cutting down trees due to poverty, which over time damaged the environment of the mountain area. In 1988, a rainstorm washed away almost all the houses and roads there. Learning from the painful experience, Baisha Village started to optimize its industrial structure and embarked on a new path of ecological construction to protect the environment and develop tourism. The local government encouraged villagers to develop agritainment with unique ecological advantages and established a high standard sewage treatment system with government grants, making Baisha Village a well-known ecological tourist attraction in the Yangtze River Delta. In recent years, the village benefis in over 20 million yuan annually only from agritainment.


The story of Baisha Village is a microcosm of Zhejiang's ecological civilization construction, an elaboration of the concept of "lucid water and lush mountains are valuable assets" put forward by President Xi Jinping during his term as Party Secretary of Zhejiang Province, and a demonstration of the theme of the Conference, "Strengthening International Cooperation and Building Ecological Civilization".


Be it Taihu Lake or West Lake, and be it in rural or urban areas, all are part of the natural ecology and need to be cared for together. In the new century, the successive provincial governments of Zhejiang have always attached great importance to environmental protection and ecological construction, consistently promoting the construction of an ecological province over the past 10 years with three rounds of the "811" three-year action plan. We do not deliberately pursue a rapid growth of GDP, but rather focus on economic transformation and upgrading to leave enough space for environment protection even when the GDP growth is slow. We are determined to eliminate backward production capacity with a strong resolve to control pollution with great commitment and to fully complete the tasks of energy conservation and emission reduction assigned by the state, with the results of energy conservation and emission reduction leading the country for years. We are also determined to build "beautiful villages" like Baisha Village, improving the environment of 26,000 villages comprehensively in total.


In the future, with respecting the laws of nature and protecting nature as the premise and basing on the carrying capacity of the resources and environment, we will build a sustainable industrial structure, production methods and consumption patterns as the main content, to achieve the interdependence, mutual promotion, and harmonious coexistence of human and natural environment, better protecting the lucid water and lush mountain of Zhejiang to make due contribution to building our common ecological homeland.

 



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