Renewed porpoise: China races to save river’s last mammal
After decades of damage, there are hopes the animal can become an emblem of the country's eco revival
On a short stretch of the Yangtze river, three sleek grey porpoises twist in muddy waters near the city of Nanjing, protected from passing barges and ships by a row of yellow buoys.
With only 1,000 remaining, the Yangtze finless porpoise is a symbol of the damage done to China’s longest river in a decades-long campaign to tame floods, reclaim farmland and industrialise the regions along its banks.
President Xi Jinping’s call for sustainable growth in the Yangtze “economic belt” has raised hopes that the river’s last surviving mammal can become an emblem of China’s environmental revival...