China's top 10 eco-cities have been unveiled and Zhuhai in Guangdong province, Xiamen in Fujian province and Sanya in Hainan province stood out to receive honors, according to the Report on the Development of China's Eco-Cities (2015), released in Beijing on Thursday.
The remaining seven are Tongling, Xinyu, Huizhou, Zhoushan, Shenyang, Fuzhou and Dalian. The top 10 were selected from some 284 eco-cities nationwide ranked as very healthy cities to work and live in, according to the report.
Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin and Chongqing are also in the Top 100, but rank from 33 to 80, the report said.
As one of China's most authoritative reports on eco-cities, the study was jointly conducted by the Research Center for Cultural Policies of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, the Institute of Urban Development of Gansu province, Lanzhou City University and Social Sciences Academic Press.
"Resources boomed in cities in China's vast western region which has made big progress as many cities in the western region are in the top 100 list," said Liu Juke, deputy director of the Institute of Urban Development of Gansu province. They are proof of China's Go West Campaign initiated by the central government in 1999; added Liu, who is also chief editor of the report.
He also pointed that among the 284 eco-cities, only 3.78 percent were judged very healthy to work and live in, while the remaining 178 ranked from 12th to 189th were ranked as healthy. The 86 cities ranking from 190 to 275 are rated sub-healthy and account for 30.28 percent of the total.
"Some 3.17 percent are ranked as unhealthy ones which means the task to build eco-cities in the future is still very tough," Liu added.
The relationship of eco-cities' construction and urbanization is another major area for the report. It explained that eco-cities' construction is an inevitable course for urbanization as China's urbanization rate reached 54.77 percent and has entered a fast development phase.
"Years of development have made some progress so that eco-cities development has become more rational and practical than before, but still we need to face the reality that the phenomena that behavior such as violating natural and environment development rules still increasingly exist," said Lu Dadao, an academic at the Chinese Academy of Sciences.
According to Lu, some places copy and replicate well-known western architecture or rebuild ancient Chinese towns. These actions not only destroy local natural environment, but also waste large amount of public expenditure
"China's eco-cities construction should be centered with people's interests as the fundamental basis. Some European cities have made good attempts in eco-cities construction, and we can learn from some of their experiences," Lu said.
But China is huge with a vast population, and the problems we meet are more complicated and tough than elsewhere. We cannot rush success, he added.
"I do suggest mayors of cities have a look at the book and the report can be good for them to avoid detours and mistakes. We should protect our ecological environment as protecting our lives and eyes," said Li Jingyuan, director of Research Center for Cultural Policies of CASS.（ChinaDaily.com.cn）