Biodiversity and Conservation

, Volume 28, Issue 2, pp 523–537 | Cite as

Conflict between biodiversity conservation and economic growth: insight into rare plants in tropical China

  • Hong-Hu Meng
  • Shi-Shun Zhou
  • Lang Li
  • Yun-Hong Tan
  • Jian-Wu Li
  • Jie LiEmail author
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Biodiversity exploitation and use


Biodiversity managements are always hot topics in China that harbors so much hyper-biodiversity. However, biodiversity loss is continuing as economic growth is accelerating during recent decades. Questions that need to be addressed with regard to the conflict between biodiversity conservation and economic growth are: how much conservation effort is required and what measures are necessary to reconcile conflicts. Here we evaluate the phenomenon and conservation status of representative of the rare plants with important economic values in tropical China. They are facing the danger of extinction, even are disappearing as they are discovered. This topic enables us to propose conservation measures to resolve the dilemma that continued biodiversity loss is linked closely with economic growth. A combination of ex situ conservation, in situ conservation and in-depth surveys, is necessary to protect biodiversity in the tropical China. Insights gained from current conflict will permit a greater understanding of the rare plants with significant evolutionary and ecological roles but which are threatened by economic development, thus enabling the relevant departments to develop and implement appropriate conservation policies.


Biodiversity conservation Economic growth Rare plants Tropical China Recommendations 



We are grateful to Prof. John G. Conran, Prof. Richard T. Corlett and Prof. Scott L. Collins for their constructive comments, which have greatly improved the quality of the manuscript. This study was supported by grants from by Science & Technology Basic Resources Investigation Program of China: Survey and Germplasm Conservation of Plant Species with Extremely Small Population in South-west China (2017FY100100) to J. Li; Southeast Asia Biodiversity Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Sciences (Y4ZK111B01), the CAS “Light of West China” Program and Youth Innovation Promotion Association, CAS (2018432) to H.-H. Meng.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Plant Phylogenetics and Conservation Group, Center for Integrative Conservation, Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical GardenChinese Academy of SciencesKunmingChina
  2. 2.Specimens and Germplasm Conservation Center, Center for Integrative Conservation, Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical GardenChinese Academy of SciencesMenglunChina
  3. 3.Plant Diversity and Conservation Group, Center for Integrative Conservation, Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical GardenChinese Academy of SciencesMenglunChina
  4. 4.Southeast Asia Biodiversity Research InstituteChinese Academy of SciencesNay Pyi TawMyanmar

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