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Report: China to Create Massive Panda National Park 

FILE - Female Giant Panda Qiao Yuan, 24, eats a bamboo shoot at the China Conservation and Research Center for the Giant Panda Dujiangyan Base in the southwestern province of Sichuan, March 25, 2017.

China’s Sichuan province government has secured 10 billion yuan ($1.58 billion) in funding over the next five years for a planned Giant Panda National Park, three times the size of the U.S. Yellowstone National Park, China Daily reported Thursday.

The park will protect wild pandas across Sichuan, Shaanxi and Gansu provinces, while the funding will help alleviate poverty for residents living within the park and improve infrastructure, the China Daily reported a park planning official as saying.

Last month, China’s environment ministry said it had approved plans by 15 provinces and regions to draw up “red lines” to keep large areas of its territory, including wetlands, forests, national parks and protected natures zones, off-limits to economic development.