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[World report] The case of Nanjing in China – The importance of shady roadside trees

by | 30-09-2011 23:48 Comments 3 Comments recommendations 0 recommendations



Roadside trees give people shades and supply oxygen. So to cut down greenhouse gases, we should preserve roadside trees or plants. Unfortunately, there are some cases that recently, local and national governments in the global village are cutting down roadside trees for a variety of development projects. There is a specific example to show this phenomenon: Nanjing in China.

In Nanjing there are many wutongs planted in the sidewalks. Wutongs refers to the London plane trees, Platanus x acerifolia. Wutongs are said as supertrees by horticulturists and city planners, because they are immune to urban grime and smog. However, against this backdrop, there is going to be a subway expansion. Nanjing has two existing subways, but these are not enough for nine million population. So the Nanjing City Government decided to build subway line three.  This subways? extension will be calling for more than 1000 roadside trees to be plunked down and most of them are wutongs.

In the late 1800?s or early 1900?s, wutongs were introduced to China by the French. Nanjing planted more than 20000 saplings in 1928 and 1929 along the Zhongshan Avenue. The trees provided shade, so that more wutongs were planted in 1950. But in 1993, more than 3000 were removed to make the Shanghai-Nanjing expressway and nearly 200 were also removed in 2006 to build the Nanjing subway line. Now as I said above, subway line three is going to be built, so that 1000 trees are going to be removed.

Many non-governmental organizations (NGOs), people, and even some celebrities are trying to stop this. On March 19 this year, hundreds of citizens gathered outside the city library to protest. Mr. Huang, a television celebrity, decided not to repost online calls for street protests. Anyway, the police dispersed the crowd in an hour. Fortunately, the Nanjing City Government was looking to compromise, including the countermeasure: the formation of a ?green assessment committee? to review it. The new plan is that only 319 trees are going to be removed. The case represents a grassroots democracy. A citizen?s voluntary campaign in Nanjing are said to save the earth filled with smog. Just one tree is just nothing, but hundreds of greens trees is not just nothing but everything that can save the planet and make it possible for earthians to inhale pure oxygen. Likewise, a citizen?s voice is just nothing, but the voice of hundreds of thousands of citizens is not just nothing but everything that can save the planet and make it possible to change policies. I have a firm belief that just one tree, also even just one citizen?s voice can generate big waves and save our planet, green earth.

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3 Comments

Rohan Kapur

  • Rohan Kapur says :
    Well shared
    Posted 08-06-2013 02:13

  • says :
    As the trees turn older the shades are more cooler. In Delhi also we have 100 year 150 year old trees.
    Posted 08-06-2013 02:05

  • says :
    Thank you Ji yoon~~ It would be very appriciated if you post these articles on the Ambassador report too :D
    Posted 28-10-2011 15:37

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