The Li River and Karst mountains near Guilin City in China

Program Summary

This activity will focus on deepening knowledge of integrated landscape management approaches in the Chinese protected areas system through effective and participatory ecosystem conservation and sustainable livelihoods.


China is one of 17 mega-biodiversity countries in the world, harboring 10% of all plant species and 14% of animal species globally. Rapid socio-economic development and a resources-intensive growth model have put China’s ecosystems, biodiversity and associated environmental services under increasing pressure. Challenges are significant –to name but a few:  44% of animal species are in decline; 90% of grasslands are experiencing degradation and desertification; 40% of major wetlands severely degraded, especially mudflats and mangroves; and 53% of areas under threat from desertification are not appropriately controlled. Rapid socio-economic development has put China’s biodiversity and associated ecosystem services under increasing pressure. Establishing  and  consolidating Protected Areas (PA) in  a  country  as  populous  as  China  is thus a key development  issue, requiring  a  rebalancing  of complex  trade-offs  in  the integration  of conservation  and sustainable use of natural resources within the landscape. PA system consolidation and integration is fundamental because existing shortcomings are directly affecting effective conservation of natural ecosystems.


PROGREEN analytics work will focus on large-scale ecosystems of national and global importance in China and their associated landscapes. There will be three main pieces of analytical work, designed based on discussion and prioritization with Government of China (GoC). These will help further the dialogue with GoC, provide needed inputs for Chinese decision-makers in the establishment of NPs (National Parks) and PA consolidation, inform the preparation of the China National Park Program, and facilitate dialogue with the Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR) around ecosystem services. Further refining and selection of specific topics mentioned below will take place during preparatory work.

[Expected] Results

  • Develop global good practices on PA typologies and applicability to the Chinese context.
  • Focus on balancing conservation and sustainable use of natural resources in conservation landscapes.
  • Analytical contributions and toolkit on large-scale restoration of ecosystems and conservation landscapes.


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Right Activity Title
China is a Knowledge Activity