Project Locations: Inner Mongolia
Bordering the Republic of Mongolia and Russia to the north, and eight other provinces to the south east and west, INNER MONGOLIA is China’s 3rd largest province covering an area of nearly 1.2 million square kilometres. Over 20% of the population is made up of ethnic minorities, the majority of which is Mongol whose nomadic lifestyle and traditional tent-style dwellings, gers, can still be seen in many parts of the province.
China’s second largest forest area is found among mountains and grasslands of eastern Inner Mongolia, which support a variety of wildlife including the endangered snow leopard and several vulnerable bird species such as: red-crowned, Siberian and white-naped cranes and the scaly-sided Merganser. In the west, the landscape is characterised by dry hot deserts and sparse vegetation, including part of the Gobi Desert. Mining, especially for coal, is on the increase as is foresting and the conversion of grasslands to pasture all of which contribute to desertification, putting unsustainable pressure on Inner Mongolia’s already fragile ecosystems.
Shangri-la Institute’s Eco-China programme aims to promote environmental protection throughout the country and to integrate the learning of China’s varied eco-systems, natural heritage and biodiversity into the national curriculum. Inner Mongolia is a key location for this project with 12 schools in different parts of the province working in co-ordination with Shangri-la Institute and the Inner Mongolia Teacher’s University on curriculum development, teacher’s training and organizing learning outside the classroom (field activities, community initiated projects etc).
The long-term objectives of this project include the development of informed and empowered communities who are more active in the protection of national, regional and local eco-systems and biodiversity. In each region different schools taking part in our Eco-China project will specialize in specific aspects of sustainability. According to the local context, natural and cultural environment, schools in Inner Mongolia will specialize in desertification and sustainable land management.
This post is also available in: Chinese (Simplified)