Green Tips (Mar 2017) - History of Hong Kong's Forests

21 March is the International Day of Forests. Let’s learn more about the history of our forests!

#LoveForests #IntlForestDay

  • There were subtropical rainforests in Hong Kong long before it was inhabited by people.

  • In the Yuan Dynasty (1206-1368), deforestation started on the high ground for tea cultivation.

  • During the Japanese Occupation (1941–1945), the occupying Japanese cleared Hong Kong’s forests for fuel. Only patchy forests survived and covered less than 4% of its land.

  • In 1960s, countering the water shortage crisis, the government resorted to building reservoirs and started planting more trees around Hong Kong as they can improve the catchment area.

  • In 1970s, the government launched a reforestation program and designated about 41% of the land area of Hong Kong as country parks and restricted areas. About two-thirds of its forests are protected in these areas since then.

  • In 1997, the Kadoorie Farm established a native tree nursery. It can home 400 native species and produces 25,000 seedlings every year.

  • In 2009, the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD) launched the Country Parks Plantation Enrichment Scheme to enrich the overall value of country park plantations. Major improvement measures include thinning of aging exotic tree species and planting of native tree seedlings.

  • In 2015, AFCD  planted 400,000 trees seedlings in Hong Kong's country parks. 80% of them were native species.


Read more from these sources:

  • Beyond the city, Hong Kong is recreating its lost woodlands - from BBC

  • Our Forest, Our Future - from WWF Hong Kong

  • Country Parks Plantation Enrichment Project - from AFCD