Environmental Investigation on Baihe, the Water Source

Abstract

From October 2013 to August 2014, 15 college volunteers formed Bai River Investigative Team (subordinated to Green Student Forum) and launched hiking investigations on waste disposal in Bai River basin, the upstream of Miyun Reservoir for water supply in Beijing. In addition to their investigation, they recorded natural geographical views of the area as well as drew an ecological guide map for the Bai River Wetland Ecological and Cultural Park, They expected to acquire the environmental information of Bai River upstream and offer references to promote public ecological protection. The report centres on the issue of waste disposal in Bai River basin, pictures its existed problems from various perspectives, analyses its manifestations and origins and gives suggestions to following actions. The ecological guide map for the Ecological and Cultural Park of Bai River Wetland and the Bai River photo gallery will be presented aside the report, since they are strong supports to following actions.

 

The Project: in a few paragraphs, describe you project: problem; location; aims.

Bai River rises in Hebei Province, flows through Yanqing, Huairou and Miyun that are affiliated to Beijing, and as a major supply empties into Miyun Reservoir, the only drinking-water source for Beijing. In general, the river enjoys both a long history and beautiful sceneries on its banks; in particular, its reaches within Huairou and Miyun region, together with the wild Great Wall upon specially-formed rocky mountains, constitute varied view spots such as Baihe Grand Canyon, Baihe Bay, etc., which attract tourists, tour pals, fans of rock-climbing or drifting to go there for recreation and exploration. Meanwhile, as an important wetland in Beijing, Baihe Basin provides habitats for birds like egrets and mallards, featuring rich biodiversity. To promote the ecological conservation of the Baihe wetland, the local government has established Baihe Wetland Ecological Cultural Park in some reaches.

Alongside Bai River, there are numerous outdoor routes designed for tourists, especially in Miyun and Huairou district. Reliant on the routes, almost every village along the river runs farm stay, with activities of fishing and drifting attached to it. During hiking investigations in Baihe Basin, volunteers of GSF found out that tourists littered wastes everywhere and imposed huge impact on the ecological environment of Baihe Basin. To make matters worse, since Bai River is a major supply to Miyun Reservoir which now serves as the only drinking-water source for Beijing City, the ever-worsening condition of Bai River will directly influence the drinking water system of Beijing. Therefore, GSF organized Baihe Investigative Team so as to better understand the issue of waste disposal in Baihe Basin and seek solutions to it.

The investigative team consisted of 15 volunteers who were college students from Beijing universities. Ning Zuomei, a full-time staff of GSF, guided and aided the whole investigation.

What were your conservation objectives and outputs (i.e., tangible results), and were you able to accomplish them? We understand that conservation results (e.g., ecosystem changes, species recovery, etc) often take much longer than the life of the project. In this section, we ask you to describe immediate tangible results (e.g., monitoring system set up for babirusa pigs in Nantu National Park, training of forestry staff in anti-poaching patrols) that were proposed in your application. 

The purpose of this project is through fieldwork and investigation, develop understanding of the environment situation of the main supply river of Miyun reservoir – the Bai River, and provide a reference case for public ecological protection, the work we did this year just the first section, the objective in this section is that to build a team work on investigation to get the basic environmental information, then finish a Bai River ecology guide map, a report on trash situation along the Bai River, and a photo gallery of natural and geographical situation of Bai River.

We accomplished all of these three outputs, and the second section will have started to impact the local government and the public through sharing meeting, public activities, and organize volunteers to do nature education in local primary school, and other possible way, all of the inputs are the best support for the second section.

Why do you think your approach/methods were appropriate, and will you modify/change the current approach/methods in the future?

Usually, when we do a action to solve a environmental problem, we just see what the pollution is, then so something to reduce the pollution or the destroy, it’s directly, but sometime we need to find how beautiful it is, this made us fill good and get more encouragement to take action. In our project, we saw the trash situation along the Bai River, we to investigation to get the basic information to make the problem more clear, and on the other hand, we find how beautiful the Bai River is, we record the ecology, the nature by photos and eco-map. We show the problem and the beauty to the public at the same time, we think we will get more support by this way. In addition, we think it’s very important to make the local people and the local government be involved in this action, we need support each other, it’s mean we need time to get the basic information and propose feasible plan, so our work in this first section is very necessary.

It’s time to change approach in the future, because we need to promote the public and the government pay more attention for the Bai River and do action to make it better, like we hope the local government could improve the infrastructures and promote ecological education, so we will use more media methods and organize more activities that the public could join us easily.

 

Did your project contribute to capacity-building of local institutions and individuals? What were they?

Not yet, we plan try to do this in the future.

 

Did your project contribute to policy changes at the local, national, or international level? What were they?

Not yet.

 

Did your project have the outreach impact that you expected? What were they?

Yes, this project award the shortlisted candidate project of 2013 CEGC( Conservation & Environmental Grants, China) awards, this process made some other NOGs in other place knew Miyun Reservoir and Bai River and our action.

Did the NGS grant allow you to raise additional funds for yourself or an associated project/program?

Yes.

Has your project attracted media attraction (including NGS)? Please list ones that have already occurred or is definitely going to take place in the near future (i.e., ‘NG Live on September 10, 2014 in Stockholm’ and not, ‘Planning to approach BBC Wildlife…’).

Not yet, it’s the direction of our next work.

What are the key findings that make this project/grant media-worthy? Please list/describe.

We think it’s that we found Black Stork which is the CITES Ⅰ level protected bird in Bai River, it’s in August 2014, between the Qingshiling village and the Sihetang Bridge, it’s the first time we saw this birds in Bai River, it’s said there are Black Stork there several years ago, but they didn’t saw it these years. But now we didn’t know why the Black Stork being here, just for pass by or live here for long time? If this bird is live here for long time, it will help us to do the next step.

 

Provide any notes on benefits of this grant to you and/or your discipline.

By implementing this project, I learn more knowledge of ecology, nature education, plants and birds, and of cause, the team and I also learn a lot about the trash, like why it’s very important to do the waste separation, and this project let us to think the difference between the urban area and the countryside, we find actually, all of the trash in the countryside can be disposaled by themselves, but more and more people go to countryside and bring a lot of stuff from the city, product a lot of trash that can not be disposaled by the countryside, so more and more trash leaved in the Bai River, think about this, in our opinion, how to raise the awareness of the public is a difficult work to do.

 

Additional notes (i.e., any notes or comments on your project not addressed in the questions above).

We finished our field research, and we finished the field research report, but we still need some time to make the Bai River ecology guide map and the photo gallery of natural and geographical situation of Bai River, because we need to chose the good photos and design the map and he photo gallery. We think we can finish all of these before the 15th November.

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