Public shares benefits, as Yangquan goes ever greener
A panoramic view of Beishan Park in Yangquan city. Beishan Park was once a waste slag area. To control pollution and improve the urban environment, Yangquan established a comprehensive park there after over 10 years of treatment and construction and opened the park in October 2006. [Photo/Yangquan Daily]
For decades before the 21st century, Yangquan -- as a typical coal resource-based industrial city in North China's Shanxi province -- sacrificed a lot in terms of its environment when developing the local economy.
But these days, things are different.
Officials said that in order to control air pollution and improve the environment in the city, Yangquan has been cleaning up its act in terms of new, eco-friendly construction, increasing its greening and afforestation and promoting environmental protection since 2000.
So far, the city has built four comprehensive parks, two strip parks, one special park and more than 140 small street gardens -- with the green park space increasing to over 6.5 million square meters from less than 600,000 sq m in 2000.
In addition, Yangquan has started treating and enhancing its road environment since 2016, by demolishing illegal structures and adding greening along the roads.
As of the end of 2018, the green coverage rate in Yangquan reached 36.57 percent and the per capita park green space grew to 11.3 sq m.
Nowadays, it takes local residents only a few minutes to travel between their home and green spaces and parks in the city, which was lauded as national garden city in 2012.
More people are enjoying the green benefits -- fresh air, a verdant city and crystal blue sky -- brought about by the environmental improvement.