The Mitsui & Co. Environment Fund

Introduction to Grant Projects

Green Earth Network (GEN)

Establishing fruit orchards to support forest regeneration (Datong, Shanxi Province, China)

Activity grant

Project Description

Datong in Shanxi Province, China, is the source of water for major cities and food production areas in Northern China, but is currently under threat from soil erosion, desertification, and water shortages, and has become a channel for wind-blown sand. Although national greening initiatives are underway, environmental conditions are harsh and diverse forest regeneration approaches are needed. Since 1999, GEN has strived to create model projects, such as natural botanical gardens, but a financial base needs to be established in order to ensure their long-term management. This project involves securing 20ha of land for cultivating trees with marketable fruit, such as apricots and peaches. Experts, researchers, and volunteers will be dispatched from Japan in order to share cultivation techniques, and the orchards will be built, maintained, and managed by our local counterpart, the Datong General Labor Union, and its subsidiary organizations.

Preservation of surface soil and forestsPreservation of biodiversity and ecosystem
Grant year
FY2007 Activity Grants
Grant term
3 years
July 2007 - June 2010
Grant amount
15,209,722 yen
Activity region
Datong, Shanxi Province, China
Local children and Japanese volunteers planting pine seedlings

Overview of the Organization

Yoshishige Tachibana, Representative
Yoshishige Tachibana, Representative
Establishment purpose
GEN aims to promote cooperation between peoples, regardless of borders, for the benefit of the global environment. It provides support for reforestation efforts by people living in areas around the world that are deeply affected by top soil loss and desertification, and strives to protect greenery in places where people live and to encourage the coexistence of people with the environment.
Main areas of activity
Datong, Shanxi Province, China, and all regions of Japan
4 full-time staff members, 10 part-time staff members, and 620 full members
Annual operating budget
80.70 million yen in 2005, 74.01 million yen in 2006, 86.68 million yen in 2007
Recent activities
GEN is cooperating with greening efforts in Datong, Shanxi Province, located on China's Huangtu Plateau. The plateau spreads across Northern China and only receives about 400ml of rainfall each year. The region is one of China's poorest and is plagued by annual droughts. GEN is carrying out various initiatives to combat desertification in the region, including creating 'global environment forests' that combine pine and shrubbery in mountainous and hilly areas, creating elementary school orchards to support students, producing seedlings for planting, creating forest environment centers for carrying out practical training, creating natural botanical gardens to prevent grazing and to monitor the recovery of vegetation, creating experimental 'magpie forests', and developing experimental 'bridging forest' fruit orchards.