A forest planted decades ago to prevent sandstorms from hitting northern China is in a severe state of decay. The tree line covers more than 102,000 hectares of northern Zhangjiakou, a city in Hebei province about 200 kilometers from the capital. According to forestry officials, 92 percent of the poplars last year were “hypermature”, meaning they have been decaying for a decade. A third of the forest is dead or dying and 48,800 hectares are growing poorly…Full article: China Daily Dec 2013

Key point

  • The forest was planted in northwestern Hebei province in 1967 in an effort to guard against sand (from Inner Mongolia) from blowing into Beijing

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