(TibetanReview.net, Oct12’22) – China has rendered half of the territory of Tibet Autonomous Region off-limit for Tibetans by listing them under the scope of an ecological protection red line, according to China’s official chinadaily.com.cn Oct 12, citing a news conference in capital Lhasa on Oct 10 by environmental authorities.
The ecological protection red lines cannot be crossed and are located in areas with critically important ecological functions that should be strictly protected, the report noted.
Since the 18th National Congress of the CPC in 2012, the region has spent over 12.7 billion yuan ($1.82 billion) on various types of ecological protection projects, the regional ecological department was cited as saying.
The report did not say it, but these projects have included relocating hundreds of thousands of Tibetans from their ancestral villages and grazing lands, which meant an end to their traditional, ecologically sustainable, means of livelihood that had endured for many centuries until the advent of the current Chinese occupation rule.
Over the past decade, with unprecedented importance attached and investment injected, the region has achieved all-around progress in ecological civilization construction and environmental protection, Shui Yanping, deputy head of the department, has said at the news conference.
“Now, there are few people in our places still hunting or logging. Most people are highly aware of ecological protection. The rural villagers no longer have to rely on hunting and logging to meet their basic living needs,” Tenzin Tsering, a ranger in Buchu township of Nyingchi city, was quoted as saying.
“Nowadays, the government attaches great importance to environmental protection, and the villagers have been reminded not to cross the red line of environment protection from multiple channels,” he has added.