The National Development and Reform Commission has recently seen the light on a proposal for establishing a germplasm bank for wildlife in China's Southwest, which was jointly presented by CAS and Provincial Government of Yunnan. Now its possibility studies are under way.
Establishing a germplasm bank in Yunnan and its bordering regions is of critical importance for the protection of biodiversity in China, experts argue. The abundance of species in China ranks it among the top 10 in the world. Of these species, more than half is distributed in Yunnan province. And the number of rare and endangered species in the province accounts for about 67% of the national total, ranking first in China.
Its objective is to set up a world-class repository for wildlife germplasm. While giving consideration to both flora and fauna in Yunnan, its bordering regions and on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, the bank will give priority to plant resources and, in the near future, pay close attention to those species that are rare, endangered and of key economic and scientific value. The bank will include seed collections, in vitro plant germplasm collections, microbial germplasm collections, DNA banks, and animal germplasm banks. In terms of scale, project will combine the approaches of In situ and Ex situ conservation.