Korean Rotarians keep Mongolian eco-project blossoming
Korean Rotarians are digging in to help Mongolia go green. Photos courtesy of
The Rotary Korea regional magazine
For five years, Korean Rotarians have been working to build a green spot on one of the driest places on earth. Concerned about the Gobi Desert sandstorms emanating from Mongolia, Korean Rotarians from 16 districts developed a unique project that has built a natural windbreak forest there. The forest, made up of hippophae trees and black currant bushes, reduces sand particles that can travel for hundreds of miles, causing health and environmental damage.
The Keep Mongolia Green got a recent boost with a US$350,000 Matching Grant from The Rotary Foundation for the latest phase of the project, in which Korean and Mongolian Rotarians teamed up with local residents to plant 52,000 trees in Choir, in Govisumber Province. Mongolian Rotary clubs, as well as Mongolian government and provincial agencies, also pitched in.
In addition, Korean Rotarians have begun construction of an eco-park in Choir, which will demonstrate the use of clean reusable energy, waste recycling, and the reclamation of land used for mining. Plans for the park include orchards, vegetable farms, and nurseries, and a permanent field station for ecological and biological research that will serve five Mongolian provinces.
Since the project began, Korean Rotarians and Rotaractors have planted some 220,000 trees and have contributed to the US$1.03 million total cost of the project. The first phase of the Keep Mongolia Green project began in 2005, as a multidistrict Rotary Centennial Community Service Project.
This story was adapted from a recent edition of The Rotary Korea, the certified regional magazine serving Korean Rotary districts.