In recent years, Tianjin has invested nearly 9 billion yuan ($1.4 billion) to restore a 230-sq-km wetland area in the Qilihai section of Ninghe district. The wetland area is located on one of three existing ancient coastal shores.
The total planned investment will reach 17 billion yuan for the project. The fund is expected to boost the wetland’s natural environment with more plants, clearer water and reducing human activity in order to support more animals and build a well-working biological chain.
These efforts, at the cost of economic development in the area, are an example of the central government’s philosophy of“lucid waters and lush mountains are invaluable assets.” As the top large natural wetland in the triangle region of Beijing, Tianjin and Tangshan, Hebei province, the wetland serves as the “lungs” of the region with its ability to adjust the environment.
The increase of biodiversity in the area proves the efforts have worked -- it now has 160 species of plants and 30 species of fish, as well as 258 species of birds, an increase of 76 in 10 years for the birds. The bird population also doubled during this period.