Autumn is the busy season for the Million Tree Project (MTP). MTP conducts annual sample investigation for constantly tracking the forestry conditions. Over 8000 sampled trees on 290 plots need to be measured this year and it’s our first time to involve volunteers to help with the investigation. The volunteers are undergraduates and graduates from Research Center for Eco-Environmental Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences and Shanghai University of International Business and Economics. Working together with local farmers, 1140 trees on 34 plots had been measured during their five- day volunteer service. Let’s hear how they felt about working with MTP.
Through the 5-day trip of forestry investigation, as volunteers of the Million Tree Project (MTP), we got not only professional skills of forestry index measurement, but also skills of striding across fields of corn, sunflowers and soybeans; besides Inner Mongolian characteristic roasted mutton leg, we were warmly treated with steamed sweet potato and stir-fried sunflower seeds by local people. It was really an enjoyable and fruitful experience.
The most exciting moment came undoubtedly when ‘Brother Kai’ was remotely controlling the drone to shoot the forestry lands of MTP. With a bird’s-eye view, the trees were seen in green and yellow and orderly in rows. The once desert had turned into lush forests, the spectacular sizes of which were impressing and made me feel proud as a member of MTP.
There were frustrating moments as well. We observed low maintenance rates and widespread physical injury of trees in some sampled lands caused by environmental conditions and overgrazing and overcutting. This phenomenon made us contemplate that more effort should be made not only on the cultivation of trees but also raising public environmental awareness.
Forests were not formed in a day. Staff of MTP had put painstaking effort on each forestry land. A sense of mission welled up in me under their influence. As beneficiaries of environmental resources, we ought to respect and repay the nature.
Having suffered so much from smog in cities, why not come to plant trees to wipe out the smog and breathe fresh air?