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CLIMATE-CHANGE/CHINA-FOREST
RTXCVS1B 
April 13, 2021 
Wheel loaders move soil to prepare a field for tree planting, at one of the sections of the Yangguan... 
DUNHUANG, China 
The Wider Image: The Great Green Wall: China's farmers push back the desert one tree at a time 
Wheel loaders move soil to prepare a field for tree planting, at one of the sections of the Yangguan state-backed forest farm, on the edge of the Gobi desert, on the outskirts of Dunhuang, Gansu province, China, April 13, 2021. One such state-backed forest farm designed to repair the region's overworked ecosystem is the 4,200-acre Yangguan project, on the outskirts of the city of Dunhuang, which has proven controversial. Leaseholders eager to plant lucrative but water-intensive grapes levelled large sections of forest in 2017. In March, a government investigation team found Yangguan had violated regulations by allowing vineyards to be planted in protected forest. Villagers were also accused of illegally felling trees, and authorities were ordered to reclaim the illegally occupied land. Officials on the estate said hundreds of staff from government agencies in Dunhuang would arrive soon with the aim of planting 31,000 trees on 93 acres of land in just four days. Gradually the surviving vineyards would be replaced with trees, a manager said, a move that would affect hundreds of farmers. Picture taken with a drone. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins SEARCH "SAND RAWLINS" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES 
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