The Initiative of Jointly Building the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road (hereinafter referred to as the “Belt and Road”) was first proposed in late 2013, aiming to strengthen regional economic cooperation and promote economic prosperity along China’s western boarders and surrounding regions.
A majority of countries along the routes are developing countries and emerging economies. Due in part to the industrialization and urbanization, they are facing huge environmental challenges. The Chinese government is committed to tackling environmental problems, improving protection and sustainability under the flag of the Belt and Road project.
In May 2017 China’s Ministry of Environmental Protection released the Belt and Road Ecological and Environmental Cooperation Plan (in Chinese and English). According to the Plan, a series of eco-environmental protection programs will be introduced in years as detailed below: