Erhai Forum calls on joint efforts in ecological protection

Participants of a forum held in southwest China's Yunnan Province have called on the international community to join hands in response to the alarming environmental crisis.

The Erhai Forum, named after the well-known lake in Dali City, was held on Sunday and Monday. Representatives from government, international organizations, business and academia have gathered to discuss how to build a shared future for all life on earth.

"It's the common wish of people from all over the world to maintain a good ecology, and all parties should strengthen cooperation in such areas as biodiversity protection and green development," said Du Zhanyuan, president of China International Publishing Group, organizer of the event.

Du underlined the importance of pragmatic action, saying that all countries should contribute wisdom to the construction of a global environmental governance system and promote integrated development between the economy and the environment.

The quality of the Erhai Lake keeps improving as protection campaign continues. /CGTN

Dali is a popular tourist destination in China, and is famed for Erhai Lake. During the past few years, the local government has endeavored to rejuvenate the once-polluted lake. A 129-kilometer-long "ecological corridor" surrounding it is a major achievement of the campaign. The project includes the relocation of some 1,800 households built by the lake and the construction of an extensive sewage pipeline network.

Many participants said that pollution control in the lake has set a good example for the country's ecological protection cause, which involves application of leading technologies and wide participation of locals.

At the forum, some also shared experience and insight on other issues like wildlife conservation.

Kang Aili, a regional strategy director of the Wildlife Conservation Society, said the undertaking to protect the Earth needs the devotion of people from different walks of life and innovative approaches.

"The efforts of nature conservation organizations alone are far from enough. We need to pull together," she said, adding that corporate engagement is also crucial in promoting sustainable development.

This can be illustrated by the practices of alcohol producer Diageo, which is building a whisky distillery in Dali's Eryuan County. The company said the project will be operated in a green way.

"It will be carbon neutral from day one. We'll use green energy to power all of the fuel that the distillery will consume. We're also gonna be utilizing and recycling 100 percent of all the water as well through some new technologies that we are putting in place," Mark Edwards, managing director of Diageo China, told CGTN.

"From an ecological perspective, we hope to be contributing to the government's initiatives here, but also playing a role in the community as well," he added.

The "Green Life City Alliance Initiative" is launched at the forum. /CGTN

The world is facing enormous ecological challenges, in particular biodiversity loss and climate change. The recent extreme heatwave that has been sweeping many countries has sounded the alarm to all humanity. Attendees agree on the importance of joint efforts.

Arthayudh Srisamoot, Thai Ambassador to China, told CGTN that the forum provides a platform for people from different countries and fields to share experiences.

"China has been in the forefront of trying to lead the international effort towards preservation of the environment and the Erhai lake is a good example of how local community and government have been able to protect the environment, preserve the natural beauty as well as developed the economy," said the ambassador.

At the event, an initiative called "Green Life City Alliance" was launched, which encourages everyone to play an active role in building a beautiful planet together.

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