‘Understand, protect, share benefits of biodiversity’

Business Mirror

‘Many species in our country were already extinct before I was born,” lamented Sophea Chhin, a young biodiversity information specialist from Cambodia. Nevertheless, he said, there’s always new species waiting to be discovered—protected and conserved.

Chhin, who was among the 10 recognized as Asean Biodiversity Heroes, said governments play a very important role in biodiversity conservation, citing his country’s experience, wherein the protected areas (PAs) coverage doubled—from 3 million hectares in 2016 to 7 million hectares to date.

Along with the other Asean Biodiversity Heroes, Chhin spoke on the topic “The Role of Governments in Promoting Biodiversity Conservation” during the Asean Biodiversity Heroes Ceremony and Forum held in a hotel in Malate, Manila, on August 7.

According to Chhin, after suffering from the Pol Pot regime in 1970s, biodiversity conservation in Cambodia eventually started from scratch. He said there was no scientist in Cambodia nor there was not much biodiversity left to protect to start with because of the war.

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