Adviser seeks protection for wetland

A city political adviser is asking for protection for the remainder of a wetland area that has shrunk to 20 percent of its original area in the past seven years and faces being completely paved over.

The wetland near the Shanghai Science and Technology Museum in the Pudong New Area covered about 30,000 square meters when it was formed some 10 years ago but has shrunk to about 6,000 square meters as a result of urban development, said Zhang Xiaolan, a local political adviser.

Pudong's urban planning authority plans to turn the whole area into a business hub that includes stores, office buildings and cultural venues like theaters, Zhang said in a report to the city's top political advisory body asking for the protection of the remaining wetland.

The wetland was formed around the end of 2000 when a local developer dug two huge depressions in an area made up of farmland and a creek but then abandoned the project. Rain collected in the depressions and became two ponds as wild animals and plants began to proliferate in the area.