Saturday, August 21, 2010

Back from Horqin Desert!

For the past four days, I was away in Inner Mongolia to help green the Horqin Desert. This area, which covers 400,000 sq km (the size of Switzerland!) used to be a grassland - the way you'd imagine a Mongolian grassland to be - but due to climate change, over-cultivation, and over-grazing, Desertification has taken place. Today, the Horqin Desert is expanding at 6 million hectares a year - that's 1,900 sq km per second!

I studied Desertification as a Geography student for 6 years, but that was only a concept I understood in theory. Never in my wildest dreams would I imagine myself witnessing this process first-hand... and better yet, to do something within my capacity (albeit small) to help reverse it.

I feel really privileged to have the opportunity to join Green Network (Japanese environmental NGO) and Timberland's Earthkeepers movement to head to Horqin Desert to plant 1,400 trees over 2 days, to water them and prune them. Here's some background to the Earthkeepers initiative, which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year:

And I have many stories to share now that I'm back, as well as four interviews to air on The Living Room in the coming week! Stay tuned to find out when we'll be airing this Greening of Horqin Desert series on 938LIVE!

For fast & regular updates, join us on our Facebook page. I'll be uploading lots of photos & videos there in the coming days! *wink*

But first, here's a vid to whet your appetite: Here we are arriving at Horqin Desert in "cattle transporter" vehicles, and the girl you see reporting is Discovery Travel & Living's Janet Hsieh, whom you will also hear me profile on our show this week! *grin*

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