BEIJING, PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC OF CHINA – Six images showcasing differing approaches to environmental cleanup in the People’s Republic of China (PRC) have won prizes in the Asian Development Bank’s (ADB’s) “My View” photo contest. 

“Every shot reflects awareness of the importance of protecting and improving the environment,” said Amy Leung, Deputy Director General of ADB’s East Asia Department. “In capturing these everyday scenes, the young photographers highlight such themes as citizens’ awareness of waste classification, the hard work carried out by environmental sanitation workers, and public efforts to clean up litter.”

The contest—part of this year’s celebration of the ADB-PRC 30 years partnership—attracted more than 80 entries exploring environmental actions under the theme of “China’s Green Dream.”

The winners are Wang Haoyu from Liaoning Province in first place; with Yang Liu from Shandong Province and Li Qingqing from Sichuan Province in second place; and Chen Xinxia from Zhejiang Province, Li Yuting from Liaoning Province, and Wang Lei from Jiangsu Province taking the third places.

After three decades of rapid economic growth, millions of Chinese people have escaped poverty in an economy that has emerged as the second biggest in the world. However, this spectacular growth has resulted in serious environmental problems. Many of the PRC’s major cities suffer poor air and water quality. Meanwhile, rural areas face severe pollution of soil, rivers and lakes. The cost of pollution damage in the PRC is estimated to be 6-9% of gross domestic product. 

The PRC's youth is playing a big role in creating a “Green Dream.” For example, many Chinese young couples have become eco-tourists in order to escape the pollution and stress of the country’s urban hyper growth. This has resulted in an increase in the number of national nature reserves from 34 in 1978 to 407 in 2013.

The contest was open to all non-professional photographers who are Chinese citizens of age between 16 and 30.  Images had to be taken personally by the photographer, not be previously published, and depict a scene within the country. The winning images can be found on ADB’s Weibo account and Facebook page.

ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth, and regional integration. Established in 1966, ADB in December 2016 will mark 50 years of development partnership in the region. It is owned by 67 members—48 from the region. In 2015, ADB assistance totaled $27.2 billion, including cofinancing of $10.7 billion.

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