All iron, nonferrous and precious metals mines in the Lop Nur Bactrian Camel National Nature Reserve in Xinjiang province were shut permanently as of the end of June.
This move was an effort to restore the reserve’s ecological environment, following probes by the central government’s inspection team at the beginning of this year.
Twenty-five mines, including Cihai Iron Mine and Yaxi Iron Mine, withdrew from the reserve by the end of June. In Bazhou city, 57,000 m2 of waste management facilities were dismantled, 1.61 million m3 of mine pits were filled, 14 illegal projects were halted, and ecological environment was restored at 22 mines.
In Hami city, over 53 million yuan was invested to restabilise the reserve’s geological environment.
Lop Nur Bactrian Camel National Nature Reserve is located in the south-east of Xinjiang, and covers ten local counties or towns. Though the reserve has rich reserves, mining has been prohibited in order to protect the ecology and wildlife.
Driven by high profit margins, local miners had exploited mineral resources. This caused much surface damage to the land, depleted and polluted water sources and caused waste to accumulate.