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Wetlands around Tonle Sap shores in Siem Reap restored

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Environment ministry officials and Siem Reap provincial authorities plant trees on 40 hectares of wetland Boeung Pearaing on January 25. BTV

Wetlands around Tonle Sap shores in Siem Reap restored

The Ministry of Environment and Siem Reap provincial authorities on January 25 replanted 2,000 trees in the Boeung Pearaing conservation area bordering Zone 3 of the Tonle Sap Lake. Replanting will sustainably preserve the natural resources and biodiversity of the lake for the future.

Provincial environment department director Sun Kong said planting trees in Siem Reap was the policy of minister Say Samal, who had provided enough flooded forest saplings, bamboo trees and palm kernels to plant 40ha in the province.

He said the operation will be carried out in phases. As the first step, 5ha were planted with more than 2,000 saplings.

He continued that about 200 people joined the planting, including senior officials from the ministry, the provincial hall and departments, the Chreav commune administration in Siem Reap town, and members of the Union of Youth Federations of Cambodia. Another 12,000 palm seeds will be handed over to the town, district or commune administrations for planting in Zone 3.

“This morning we planted trees in the Boeung Pearaing breeding conservation area for fish and other species. We will make sure that the flooded forests grow back to protect the natural balance of the delicate eco-system in the Tonle Sap multi-purpose area,” he said.

Kong added that his department intends to plant an additional 35ha across Siem Reap, but has not yet determined the exact locations. The next phase of the replanting will take place when the rainy season arrives, as the saplings require a lot of water.

Provincial deputy governor Ly Samrith said on January 26 that the replanting was mostly taking place on state land that had previously been encroached upon. The provincial administration had replanted saplings in Zone 3 as well as in other provinces along the Tonle Sap Lake.

“We have fully replanted the trees on the reclaimed land because it had been deforested by people who grew crops there. A total of 2,600ha has been returned to the authorities, but there will be more. They return 9ha or 10ha a day,” he said.

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