Preserving and promoting value of forests and ecosystems

Posted at: THUrsday - 23/01/2014 14:18 - post name: Phan Trọng Quỳnh

Preserving and promoting value of forests and ecosystems

Because of climate change’s disaster, the area of natural forest is at risk of being narrowed, ecosystems’ biodiversity is destroyed and reduced heavily with increasingly serious environmental pollution. Therefore, afforestation and sustainable utilization of ecosystem are contributing into developing the green economy in Vietnam. discussed with Prof. PhD. Dang Huy Huynh – Deputy Chairman of Vietnam Association for Conservation of Nature and Environment.

Interviewer: The natural forest ecosystems on land, wetland, sea and island are degrading gradually while population is increasing, climate change was threatening to the people’s life. Have we had solution to prevent this situation yet?

Prof. PhD. Dang Huy Huynh: The Party and State currently enforced guidelines on building the national strategies on green growth in the period of 2011-2020 and vision up to 2030 along with the implementation of the Resolution of the 7th Conference of the 11th Party's Central Executive Committee on taking initiative in response to climate change, enhancing natural resources management, and environmental protection. In order to carry out these sound guidelines and policies, the organization of forestation recovery and development as well as natural ecosystem protection is considered as one of the important solutions which contribute to building up a green economy – green growth of sustainable development in Vietnam.

Interviewer: Vietnam is one of the countries in the world with the advantage of forest, diversity of ecosystems, and plenty of natural and cultivated element plants. Is it the advantage of developing green economy?

Prof. PhD. Dang Huy Huynh: In accordance with scientists, up to now, 16,428 kinds of plants have been classified and counted, including 4,528 kinds of non-vascular plants and 11,458 vascular plants, of which many non-wood forest products have economic value, particularly, nearly 4,000 species with medicinal value. Besides wild plants, Vietnam is one of the centers which have the most trees in the world with about 1,000 kinds of trees. These are the basis of developing the green economy in Vietnam.

As counted, there are 21,125 species of wild animals, including 7,750 insect species, 1,100 freshwater fish species, 2,038 saltwater fish species, 162 amphibian species, 316 reptile species, 840 bird species, 310 mammal species, 15 marine mammal species, and tens of thousands of invertebrate species which are allocated in the forest ecosystems on land, mangrove swamp, wetland, and sea.  

In recent years, many species of plants, animals, insects, land animals, and aquatic animals and plants have been discovered but not counted yet. However, it is very clear that the natural forest resources as well as planted forests are the important materials and great potentiality in the planning to develop green economy and green growth, as based on the natural forest and planted forests that the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Vietnam Farmers' Union, Committee for Ethnic Minorities and Mountainous Areas, and others planted to develop the farm system with about 113,730 farms, including 17,721 breeding farms; 55.529 crop plant farms; 2,661 forestry farms; 34,202 aquaculture farms; and 4,630 general trading farms.

All farms are allocated in all areas of the country, particularly, Cuu Long River Delta and Red River Delta with many large-scale farms. Along with farms for cultivating and storing genetic source of plants and animal, Vietnam has systems of 164 special-use forests, including 30 National Parks, 58 nature reserves, 11 species conservation areas, 45 landscape protection areas, 20 forests for scientific research with 45 Internal Water Reserves and 16 Sea Reserves, 5 Ramsar, 5 ASEAN Heritage Parks, 8 Biosphere Reserves, 2 World Natural Heritage Sites, and many forests in households, lineages, communal houses, pagodas, schools, parks, and etc. It is the potentiality as a base for developing green economy.   

Interviewer: Could you tell me the importance of forests to the development of green economy in Vietnam?

Prof. PhD. Dang Huy Huynh: Natural forests and planted forests in Vietnam are priceless property of the community and an important basis of socio-economic development strategy and environmental protection. Indeed, the natural forests and forests planted by people from the dawn of humankind to industrialization – modernization not only contribute to maintaining the chemical balance on the earth to stabilize climate, but also provide directly or indirectly necessary products to serve all social welfares, contributing into ensuring ecological and environmental security and acting as the basis of developing a green economy – green growth in Vietnam now and in the future.

The functions and value of all types of forests and ecosystems in Vietnam are considerable and they play a crucial role in the strategies of developing sustainable green economy. However, there is a warning that forest area and animal and plant resources in the Vietnamese ecosystem have been reduced, evenly lost because the economic development schedules chase the short-term gains but not pay attention to or think of the long-term gains and have no scientific basis – causing the serious environmental pollution from urban to rural that impacts on the public health and causes unbeneficial disorder to the health of forests and ecosystems. Therefore, the afforestation and natural and artificial ecosystem preservation in Vietnam mean building up the green economy development models throughout the country, contributing into the new rural construction program. With regard to the poverty reduction, it is necessary to enforce an appropriate policy on providing the scientific and technological investment and financial support for a sustainable forest plantation and development in the next time. 

Translated by Nga Nguyen

Author: By: Băng Thanh
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