Efforts needed to preserve wetlands

Viet Nam News –

Wetlands play a major role in preserving biodiversity and fighting climate change in Việt Nam, but the country is yet to establish firm strategies on how to preserve them.

There are about 10 million hectares of wetlands in Việt Nam spreading across eight ecological zones, including the Red River Delta and Cửu Long (Mekong) Delta. They are classified into two types: coastal wetland (including estuaries, mangroves, sandy beaches, coastal lagoons, coral reefs, seagrass beds), and inland wetland (including rivers, streams, ponds, lakes, swamps).

With 12,000 aquatic organisms living in wetlands near the sea, brackish water environments and inland wetlands, as well as 300 vertebrate species whose life cycles are associated with wetland ecosystems, wetlands play a major role in gene preservation and biological productivity in water environments, according to the Việt Nam Environment Administration (VEA).

The fact that mangroves help with coastal protection and development of mudflats and coral reefs help with the creation of islands shows their importance fighting climate change.

Aquatic products have greatly contributed to the country’s agricultural production and the national economy. In 2010 alone, the agriculture sector accounted for more than 20 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP), 28 per cent of export overturn of the country.

Despite the great benefits the wetlands bring, Việt Nam has not had specific regulations on use, management, development and preservation of the areas.

Read more