Conserving China’s plant riches – Alex Kirby

From ChinaDialogue:

Scientists think there are around 320,000 different plant species on Earth – and China is home to around 10% of them. It is a treasure-house of biodiversity, yet it is growing and industrialising at breakneck speed. The pressure on China’s plant life is intense, as agriculture and industry demand ever more land. More than 5,000 plant species are used in traditional Chinese medicine, and an estimated 11,000 species possess some economic significance. They need millions of hectares and huge quantities of water. But so do the farms and the factories. And the export trade increases the fragility of China’s riches still further. [Full Text]

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