Beijing, 2 April 2023 (TDI): Under Thar Block-1 Integrated Coal Mine Power Project, China has been pursuing a sustainable desert greening plan for Thar, Sindh.

The project is one of the significant energy cooperation projects under CPEC led by China’s state-owned Shanghai Electric.

Besides employment and energy security benefits, the project is making significant progress in the greening process of the desert.

Growing trees and shrubs near the coalfield are indeed hard; however, the team has been making it work with a spirit of endurance.

Therefore, the project team is engaged in scientific research to figure out what greening plan would be best suited for the Thar Desert, Mao Ning, a Spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs noted.

Ji Rong, a Counsellor at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of China, stated that the Thar Coal Block-I Coal Electricity Integration project is an epitome and important flagship of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

Moreover, Pakistan’s Prime Minister, Shehbaz Sharif, on his part, reiterated the significance of the project by saying that the project will give a big boost to Pakistan’s economy in the coming years.

In response, Mao appreciated the remarks of Shehbaz Sharif and further showed the willingness of China to work with Pakistan for the advancement of high-quality CPEC cooperation

Thar Million Tree Program

Near the Thar Block-I integrated mine-power project located in the Thar Desert, another Chinese project “Thar Million Tree Project” has also been working.

Under the project, a million trees and shrubs in a dry place are being grown for a few years now to store underground water and help the residents survive the harsh, desert atmosphere.

At first, when Chinese constructors arrived in Thar, they experienced an unwelcoming sight of vast amounts of sand and dust pervading the sky. However, the current situation is vastly different from the past.

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Through six years of dedicated tree-planting efforts in the desert, the terrain in this region has undergone a remarkable transformation.

Over each year, seven different types of desert flora, including Rhodes Grass, Aloe vera, and Pennicum, have been planted.

This endeavor began with the cultivation of a single tree and has since progressed to entire patches of plants, ultimately resulting in a sea of lush greenery.