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Policy Options on Comprehensive Treatment of Small Watersheds: Improving the Soil and Rebuilding the Farmland(No.142, 2016)


By Cheng Huiqiang & Gao Shiji, Research Institute of Resources and Environment Policies, DRC; Zhou Jianqi & Ma Jun, Enterprise Research Institute, DRC; Zhang Fang, Development Research Center of Dalian Municipal Government & Lu Mingquan, Dalian Jiuding Special Engineering Technology Research Institute

Research Report No.142, 2016 (Total 5025) 2016-11-2

Abstract: China’s small watersheds cover a total area of around 2 million square kilometers, accounting for one fifths of national territory. The small-watershed areas suffer severe water losses and soil erosion and frequent natural disasters and are densely populated by impoverished people. With high input but low return, these disaster-prone areas have witnessed frequent breaks of tailings dams and deteriorated natural environment. Most of China’s poor people live in small-watershed areas and due to poor and barren land conditions, local economy has remained quite underdeveloped. Currently, the small watersheds are under overlapping administration and diversified management with scattered government investment and ineffective input of non-governmental capital. It is suggested that the government should take various unfavorable factors of small watersheds into consideration, formulate scientific planning, adopt multiple regulations for an integrated and systematic treatment, take various treatment models tailored to local conditions, nurture new-type industrial systems, focus on an overall treatment of water-soil conservation and farmland cultivation, improve the comprehensive treatment system, enrich channels to attract participation of non-governmental capital, and conduct national demonstration projects in line with strategic planning. It is believed that these measures can not only lead to effective management of small watersheds, but are also effective for improving the soil and rebuilding the farmland.

Key words: small watershed, comprehensive treatment, to improve the soil and rebuild the farmland