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December 3, 2021, 5:29 am

National parks and biosphere reserves in danger

(22:52:32 PM 30/10/2012)
( - Environmentalists have expressed their concern about the fates of natural reserves, saying that the reserves have not been preserved for the purpose of biodiversity conservation.

Huynh Dam, Chair of the Dong Nai province’s Fatherland Front’s Committee, has affirmed at a recent working session that Dong Nai would pay a special attention to the environment protection.

At the working session, the Dong Nai provincial people’s committee asked the Vietnam Fatherland Front’s Committee to express its viewpoint about the Dong Nai 6 and Dong Nai 6A hydropower projects on the upper Dong Nai river.

If the state management agencies approve the two power plant projects, Dong Nai would suffer. Not only the Cat Tien National Park, the Dong Nai Biosphere Reserve, but the people on the lower course of the river would also bear serious ecological changes.

Prior to that, on October 10, the Dong Nai province’s delegation of National Assembly’s Deputies also had a working session with the investor of the Dong Nai 6 and Dong Nai 6A power plant projects and the Dong Nai provincial Department of Natural Resources and the Environment.

Duong Trung Quoc, a National Assembly’s Deputy said since the opinions remain vary about the possible environmental impacts of the hydropower plant projects, a state agency should be assigned the task of finding reliable scientific assessments to submit to the government for consideration before it makes final decision.

According to Le Viet Hung, Director of the Dong Nai provincial Department of Natural Resources and the Environment, the report on possible environmental impacts shown by the investor showed that in the Cat Loc forest, where the two power plants would be located, there is no animal or plantation species listed in the Red Book.

Meanwhile, other scientists believe that eight animal species listed in the Red Book that need strict protection are still living in the forest area.

Prior to that, on September 24, the specialists from IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) had a working session with the Dong Nai provincial authorities about the nomination of the Cat Tien National Park for the recognition as the world’s natural heritage. 

The specialists highly appreciated the biodiversity of the national park where they could see with their eyes many kinds of rare and precious plantation and animal species.

Environmentalists have also rung the alarm bell over the natural resource exhaustion in the Ea So Natural Reserve in Dak Lak province. 

The natural reserve, covering an area of 26,848 hectares, was established in 1999 with an aim to protect the original natural habitat in the area.

It is also the home to many endemic genetic resources, especially large hoofed mammals which have been living mostly in Vietnam that need to be strictly protected.

According to the director of the project’s management board Le Dac Y, forest rangers have discovered 135 cases of illegally exploiting wood and appropriating forest land, removed 500 animal traps.

Jake Brunner, Coordinator of the Mekong Program of IUCN, said the worrying thing now is that 158 out of the 164 natural reserves are put under the management of provincial authorities.

Vietnam does not have a national system of natural reserves, but it runs a system of dispersed natural reserves and keeps management through a strong decentralization mechanism.
Compiled by Thu Uyen

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