YANTAI, China, Dec. 16, 2020 /Xinhua-AsiaNet/– According to Xinhua (Qingdao) International Ocean Information Center, since Yantai launched the “Clean Beach” campaign to engage all the coastal districts and county-level cities in cleaning up floating garbage and domestic waste from the rivers, mudflats and the coastal zone, a total of 875 tons of waste in 125 locations have been cleaned up by this December. The coastal zone stretching nearly 10,000 meters that used to be messy has taken on a clean and fresh look.
Yantai, situated in Shandong Peninsula, gives top priority to ecological protection in recent years. Measures have been strengthened to manage marine resources and restore ecological environment, laying the foundation for sustainable development and improving people’s living environment.
Facing both the Yellow Sea and the Bohai Sea, Yantai has a sea area of 26,000 square kilometers, ranking among the top in China based on the marine economy. According to Zhang Shuping, Secretary of the CPC Yantai Municipal Committee, Yantai is striving to explore the path of marine ecological conservation and accumulate experience for the whole country.
Most coastal areas face the common problem of declining inshore fishery resources. Yantai, as a seaside city and home to the largest number of national-level marine ranch, deems marine ranch development as an important way to grow fishery resources, protect biodiversity and develop marine culture. In this process, Yantai pays attention to striking a balance between land and sea and between aquaculture and eco-protection. It encourages and supports relevant enterprises to build circular culture workshops and to efficiently treat the waste water which has realized comprehensive waste utilization and regional water use circulation. The water quality in the aquaculture area is being monitored at all times. Last year, the good quality rate of the sea area in the Bohai Sea under Yantai’s jurisdiction reached 98.62%, up 26% from the previously year. And the good quality rate of the inshore sea area exceeded 99%, up 15% year on year.
Yantai is committed to the restoration of the coastal zone. It has enacted a series of new regulations such as the Regulations on Coastal Zone Protection of Yantai, and implemented the eco-protection and restoration project for Changdao Island, where comprehensive pilot marine eco-culture zone has been established to restore the natural coastline and save it from receding. In the past three years, 2 billion yuan has been invested to restore the marine ecology of Changdao and over 40 kilometers of coastal zone has been restored. With the beautiful ocean environment, Changdao Island has seen its tourism booming. At present, there are 14,000 people working in the tourism sector in Changdao, accounting for 1/3 of the total population. More are joining this line of work to earn a better life.
With constant efforts, now various kinds of algae rarely seen in the past years such as zostera marina and gloiopetis appear again in Changdao. So do white finless porpoise and whales. The quantities of such species as oriental white stork, harbor seal and the Chinese egret, whose habitats require high ecological quality, have also increased. Tang Junwei, deputy director of Changdao Economic Promotion Center says, “There are 30 more kinds of algae than there was five years ago. Some economic species such as hairtail and prawns of the Bohai Bay have doubled in quantity. The vanished fishing season has returned on a small scale.”
Mr. Ye, a local resident says, “Great changes have taken place in Yantai these years. After the coastal zone has been repaired, there are now several sea bays for leisure and recreation in the city. We can enjoy the clear seawater and fine sand beach close to our house. It is very nice to walk and work out by the sea during weekends.”
Source: Xinhua (Qingdao) International Ocean Information Center