URUMQI, Sept. 12 (Xinhua) -- A state-level wetland park was established in Taklamakan, China's largest desert, in the northwest Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.
The park, located on the western edge of the Taklamakan, has been approved by the State Forestry Administration. It covers an area of around 5,818 hectares and consists of various types of wetlands, including rivers and marshes, said a spokesperson with the forestry bureau in Bachu County of Xinjiang.
The park is close to the Yarkant River. The wetland resources formed by marshes, lakes and reservoirs on the banks of the river play an important role in affecting local climate.
However, river water volume has been reduced and wetland areas have shrunk as a result of increased human activities and unregulated use of water since the 1980s, the spokesperson said.
Xinjiang has a wetland area of around four million hectares, ranking fifth among provincial-level regions in China. Preserving and restoring the wetlands have become a priority for the local government.