Jiulong River field survey


Professors and students from Tsinghua University, National Research Council of Thailand (NRCT), King Mongkut’s University of Technology North Bangkok, Ramkhamhaeng University and Royal Irrigation Department had a field survey in Jiulong River Basin during Oct. 25, 2017 to Oct. 27, 2017.

Best-known place to enjoy a good cup of tea in China is Fujian Province that serves Wulong tea, Black tea and White tea. On the first night of the survey, we paid a visit to a local specialty store to experience the traditional Chinese tea culture.

tea culture

Fig. 1. Experiencing Chinese tea culture

In recent years, the government of Zhangzhou City implements the policy of “Eco+ development” in the city. “Eco+ development” indicates that humankind develops in harmony with nature. Representing the principles that lucid waters and lush mountains are invaluable assets, the government of Zhangzhou City has shut down polluting factories, upgraded enterprises and built eco-friendly industries, parks and Flower tourist sites.

On the 26th, we went to the Zhangzhou City to take a look at the city river system treatment. Zhangzhou City river system consists of Sanxiang River, Huancheng River, Putougang River and Jiushijiuwan River. The river system had been suffered serious pollution, coastal encroachment and siltation during the 20th century. For long-term interests, the government of Zhangzhou City had introduced a series of environmental restoration plans in the past decade. In 2017, a total investment of 1.161 billion yuan has used for water remediation in Zhangzhou City.


Fig. 2. The survey on river system treatment in Zhangzhou City

There are three major measures to cope with the environmental issues in the river system:

(1) Purifying. The water pollution is mainly caused by sewage and garbage dumping from nearby factories and residents. By 2016, more than 2200 polluting factories have been closed and 10552 pig farms have been removed from the upstream of Zhangzhou City river system. Qualified water function regions reached a rate of 53.5%, 61.7% and 78.3% respectively in the first quarter of 2014, 2015 and 2016, indicating that water quality improved gradually under effective treatment.

(2) Circulating. The implementation of water flooding plan (i.e., pumping water from western and northern tributaries of Jiulong River to river system in urban area) aims at coping with circulating issue and poor water quality in Zhangzhou City river system. With the cooperation of the Xixi pump station (pumping 200,000 m3/d), the Sanxiangjiang pump station (under construction), and the Neilin pump station (under construction), the water circulating condition and water quality will be significantly improved.

(3) Dredging. Sand and silt could damage the ecology and reduce the flood carrying capacity of a river. The dredging focus on conserving watershed ecology by sediment regulation and riverbed cleaning, which will widen the riverbed, increase flow velocity and flood control ability.

city river

Fig. 3. The accomplishments of treatment of city river system

Aside from purifying the river system, the government of Zhangzhou City have also planted large areas of litchi, banana and flower in the central part of the city, which greatly improves the environment.

litchi sea

Fig. 4a. The sea of litchi in Zhangzhou city

litchi sea 1

Fig. 4b. The sea of litchi in Zhangzhou city

On the afternoon of 26th, we came to the Letu rainforest, which is one of the conservation area of Huboliao National Nature Reserve in Hexi Town, Nanjing County. Huboliao National Nature Reserve is a low-altitude forest in the southeastern coastal area of China, which is the only intact large-scale south subtropical rainforest. The conservation area located at 117°12’42″~ 117°22’45″E, 24°30’05″~ 24°56’20″N with a coverage of 30km2, including four beautiful southern subtropical rainforest communities: Huboliao (20.50km2), Zijingshan (4.7km2), Edong (4.5km2) and Letu (0.3km2).

The reserve belongs to the Jiulong River Basin and is rich in water resources. River system is well-developed there and the main streams are the Chuangchang stream, Longshan stream and Yongfeng Creek. The upper reaches of each streams mostly originate from the gorges with dense forest and high humidity. The region has an elevation ranging from 137m to 874.5m. The climate there is warm and wet (mean annual air temperature and relative humidity are 21.1℃ and 83%, respectively) and the annual rainfall varies from 1587.5mm to 1879.6mm. There are more than 260 species of rare animals and 160 species of rare plants living in the reserve area, such as the black muntjac, clouded leopard and cyathea spinulosa which known as “living fossil”.

Letu rainforest

Fig. 5a. The Letu rainforest in Huboliao National Nature Reserve

Letu rainforest1

Fig. 5b. The Letu rainforest in Huboliao National Nature Reserve

Letu rainforest3

Fig. 5c. The Letu rainforest in Huboliao National Nature Reserve

On the morning of 27th, we paid a visit to the Jiulong River Estuary Mangrove Provincial Nature Reserve, which is located at the estuary of Jiulong River (117°54’11″~ 117°56’02″E, 24°23’33″~ 24°27’38″N) with a coverage of 42km2. The region has a subtropics marine monsoon climate with plenty rainfall (mean annual rainfall is 1371.9mm) and moderate temperature (mean annual air temperature is 21.1℃). There are 212 species of wild vertebrates and 549 species of aquatic organisms living in the reserve area.

The protected species there are mangrove ecosystems, endangered wildlife and wetland birds. Mangrove is a special ecosystem growing on the terrestrial and maritime boundary region. The roots of plants there are well developed and even can sustain seawater and extreme storm. Mangrove forests serve as “Costal Guardian” in the reserve area, where is often attacked by typhoons in summer. The reserve area is also an important educational base of Xiamen University, as the unique geographical location and rich biodiversity of there have attracted lots of scholars from Xiamen University and National oceanographic institute to carry out scientific researches.


Fig. 6a. The Jiulong River Estuary Mangrove Provincial Nature Reserve


Fig. 6b. The Jiulong River Estuary Mangrove Provincial Nature Reserve


Fig. 6c. The Jiulong River Estuary Mangrove Provincial Nature Reserve

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