The plateau is an ideal natural laboratory for studies on the earth dynamics of lithosphere and the environmental change, with broad applying prospective for the regional sustainable development of the plateau. By taking Tibetan Plateau as a key area, the project has specially focused on linkages with surrounding regions and the globe. The project emphasizes the study of the process of continental collision and uplift process of the plateau, while the processes are considered as a key clue through the studies on collision mechanism, environmental changes and resource effects. The research is devoted to quantitatively depict the dynamic processes of tectonic collision and uplift and environmental changes at different time scales since the Cenozoic Era. By applying synthetic and interdisciplinary methods borrowed from earth sciences, life sciences, environmental science and their hybridized integration, the important theoretical issues such as continental collision dynamics, environmental changes, contemporary epigenetic processes and interactions between biosphere, hydrosphere, cryosphere and atmosphere have been studied, which has provided scientific bases for the resource exploitation and environment harnessing on the plateau.
Since the implementation of the project in 1998, the project have been carried out many field excursions, during which field geological, geographical and ecological survey and sampling have been finished. Meanwhile, systematic long-term and temporary observation in the field and research, and laboratory analysis, testing, and identification of collected samples and specimens were carried out. The following achievements have been made: to find out the time limit of initial stage of collision between Indian and Eurasian continents; to explain the tectonic-geological relationship at a mountain- basin lithosphere scale in the northern and southern margin of the plateau; to put forward tectonic systems and to evaluate the mineralization belt and oil gas resources of the plateau; to establish a series of major tectonic-deformation and uplift events in the northern plateau during the Cenozoic Era; to reveal a high solution dynamic process and change tendency of climate; to elaborate the effects of the plateau uplifting on the evolution and changes of the Asian monsoon; to clarify absorption and release of the green-house gas of main ecosystem types on the plateau; to predict changes of cryosphere with climate changes on the plateau and to illustrate land-cover changes as well as the rehabilitation and management of the degraded land.