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Relocation: Decisive measures for lake protection

On October 27, 2004, Yunnan held an on-the-spot working conference on protecting the lake with the theme of safeguarding the environment and national cultural resources while improving sustainable development of the economy, society, resources and area environment.

A "plan on the protection and realignment of the lake environment" was mapped out. The Lijiang government said it would complete "eight projects" in two years. "The Lige Village is the best one in the lake scenic area. However, now the lakeside is damaged due to the illegal occupation of land and building of houses by villagers," added director Yu Lijun. All the residents in the village will be relocated, according to t an ordinance and plan on lake protection and management.

In April, the relocation started. The new Lige Village is a demonstration site on national cultural ecology. There are 10 standards in force for the building of houses. The main principle is centered on the building style of authentic architecture for Mosuo houses and villages.Upon the relocation, the Luoshui Village opposite the Lige Village across the lake is also planned, which will be built into a "Mosuo cultural sightseeing village." Some illegal buildings in the village along the lake will be dismantled for an 11-kilometer lakeside belt, the side of which will border the village. There will be a walking path for tourists so as to let travelers enjoy the lake. Behind the village there will be a kilometer-long highway for travelers to enter the lake area.

Correctly dealing with shift from "hot" to "cold"

A lakeside barbecue area was once the busiest tourist spot at the lake and also the biggest polluter. Last June 13, the barbecue stalls were moved to a newly built barbecue city. Because of this, the lakeside has dramatically calmed down.

Because of this, a proprietor of a bar by the lake known as "Big Wolf," also known as Da Lang has high praise.

"In the past, there were full barbecue stalls in front of my bar. My business boomed as visitors came here for fun and barbecued foods. When the stalls were removed out and my business became dull. However, it doesn't matter to me, since it is more important to preserve the lake. If the water quality is worsened, then there will be nothing here," he said.

Now "Big Wolf" often goes to the lakeside to see if there is anything damaging the lake. If any problem developes, he notifies the authorities.

"Lugu Lake is the homeland where the Mosuo people live. As one of the Mosuo people and as an environmental protection envoy, that is what I should do," he said. As a direct administrator for the lake, Yu Lijun has additional ideas for turning the lake into a demonstration spot for a big Shangrila ecological tourism zone for Sichuan, Yunnan and Tibet believes that lake tourism will have additional charm through employing standardized management techniques.

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