On February 13, 2004, Yuntai Mountain as the fifth in the world, the third in the country China, was named the world's first World Geopark by UNESCO and caused attention at home and abroad. Meanwhile, Yuntaishan is also a national scenic spot, National Civilized Scenic Area, the first national AAAAA-level scenic spot, national natural heritage, national forest parks, national macaque nature reserve. Yuntain Mountain also has Asia's highest head drop waterfall.
Ling was one of the highest-profile targets (next to Zhou Yongkang and Xu Caihou) of the anti-corruption campaign following the 18th Party Congress spearheaded by Party General secretary Xi Jinping and central discipline chief Wang Qishan. He was the second sitting "national leader"-level figure to be investigated by the party's anti-graft agency, after CPPCC Vice-Chairman Su Rong. Chinese-language media have linked Ling to a mysterious political network composed of prominent politicians and businesspeople with origins in Shanxi called the Xishan Society.