DEC 19, 2017 05:40 AM PST

How China is successfully growing forests in salty soil


In Shandong Province in China, one city called Dongying is redefining what it means to be a forest. Due to its geographic location and confluence of the Yellow River meeting the Bohai Sea, as much as 40% of Dongying's land has a saline level of over 0.5%. This vast area of coastal land with saline soil is not the prime place for trees to thrive. But this changed in 2011 when the Shandong Ecological Afforestation Project was launched with support from the World Bank. This project intended to reforest parts of the city, focusing specifically on the saline soil regions.

In order to achieve their goal in foresting these saline soils, engineers worked together with botanists and local communities, using various methods to decrease the salinity level to below 0.3% (the level at which trees can survive). Working with plant experts, the project bred and introduced roughly 200 salt-tolerant species to the region, including 60 species that are able to grow in areas with higher than 0.3% saline. Along the way, this project proved the ecological and economic benefits of mixed-species forest, which are better able to withstand disease and pests. Over the last six years, from 2011-2016, over 13,800 hectares of saline soil were forested with plants and shrubs from the project. The project also benefited local communities by getting farmers involved in the planting processes. To learn more about Dongying's success, watch the video!
About the Author
  • Kathryn is a curious world-traveller interested in the intersection between nature, culture, history, and people. She has worked for environmental education non-profits and is a Spanish/English interpreter.
You May Also Like
OCT 20, 2019
Space & Astronomy
OCT 20, 2019
Just How Reusable is SpaceX's Falcon 9 Rocket?
  SpaceX originally designed its acclaimed Falcon 9 rocket to be a reusable rocket platform. With literally dozens of Falcon 9 rocket launches and lan...
OCT 20, 2019
Plants & Animals
OCT 20, 2019
Here's Why High-Speed Cameras Are Used to Film Wildlife
When watching TV shows about wildlife in its natural habitat, filmmakers for popular firms such as Animal Planet and National Geographic often showcase vid...
OCT 20, 2019
Cardiology
OCT 20, 2019
Heart Related Fatalities On The Rise
Recently published in JAMA, a new study sought to investigate national trends in deaths resulting from cardiometabolic disease. The study looked at cardiom...
OCT 20, 2019
Cardiology
OCT 20, 2019
The WHO Reemphasizes The Importance Of Nutrition
Nutrition lies at the foundation of good health. Without adequate nutrients, people are at substantially elevated risk for developing health problems. The...
OCT 20, 2019
Space & Astronomy
OCT 20, 2019
How Astronomers Determine the Universe's Age
The universe is so old and so large that the Earth is but an insignificant speck of dust by comparison. Astronomers are always trying to make sense of the...
OCT 20, 2019
Cardiology
OCT 20, 2019
Runner's Knee, a Rundown
Perhaps you have taken up a running or another cardiovascular activity to protect your health as you age. This is, of course, a wise and proactive thing to...
Loading Comments...