China considers building three national parks for pandas


Photo from Xinhua

The panda-abundant region in Southwest China’s Sichuan province is considering a plan to build national parks for wild pandas, to better protect these endangered and be observed by visitors.

The province’s forestry department announced plans to build the three national parks on Wednesday. Park proposals have come from a location in the area surrounding Baoxing and Lushan Counties in Ya’an city, the area surrounding Pingwu County in Mianyang city, and municipality of Chengdu.

Currently there are 46 panda conservation centers in Sichuan, but there are some 1,800 pandas that are scattered in the wild, mostly in the provinces of Sichuan and Shaanxi.

Around two million hectares of land, or about four percent of the total size of Sichuan province, is regarded as a panda habitat.

“It is highly possible for all the three cities to gain approval, possibly at the same time,” Yao Sidan, director of the Sichuan provincial forestry bureau said.

The specifics of the plans will be available in early 2016 and submitted for the approval of the State Forestry Administration, he added.

Story by CCTV News