Viet Nam has worked out a plan of action to protect and develop mangrove forests by 2010.
The mangrove forests in Viet Nam has helped limit the pollution in coastal areas, especially the pollution caused by agricultural and industrial waste water, and develop the ecological tourism in coastal provinces.
The acreage of mangrove forest in the country has been dropping from 409,000 ha to 155,000 ha, due to effects by toxic chemicals sprayed by the US troops during the war, the over-exploitation of submerged forests and shortcomings in management in localities, and the transform of mangrove forest into ground for farming and aquaculture.
The plan was discussed at a Wednesday seminar held by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development's Institute for Forestry Science and the UNEP/GEF's East Sea Project in Ha Noi.
The plan has set targets to raise the awareness of the value of mangrove forest ecology for local policy makers and managers, to increase the effectiveness in forest protection, recovery and development, to provide knowledge of biodiversity of the mangrove forest ecology and the importance of the preservation of precious and rare genes, and to improve the living conditions of local people.
The seminar also reviewed a project to prevent the environmental degradation in the East Sea and Gulf of Thailand during the 2002-2004 period. The project was part of the East Sea Project, which was participated by Viet Nam, China, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines and Cambodia. Through the project, Viet Nam has set up a database and information on status, value and characters of 14 key mangrove forests nationwide.
In the next two years, the project will be continued in mangrove forests in Xuan Thuy National Park (northern Nam Dinh province), Dat Mui (southern Ca Mau province) and Can Gio mangrove forest.
Vietnam Economic Review - (15/07/2004)