|In Việt Nam, tree density in most cities is relatively poor, and that of HCM City is the lowest at only 0.55sq.m per person compared to the national standard of 15sq.m per person, said a report from the Ministry of Construction — VNA/VNS Photo Quang Nhựt|
HCM City — Cities around Việt Nam have seen an alarmingly low tree density compared to the national standard, with that of HCMC being the lowest, said a report from the Ministry of Construction.
There are around 110,000 trees in HCM City, which is only a mere 0.55sq.m per person, well short of the national tree density criteria No. TCVN 9257:2012 of 15sq.m per person.
In addition, up to 4,000 trees in HCM City are either not urban approved or low-quality, said Dr. Đinh Quang Diệp, former head of the Department of Scenery and Flower Garden Technology at Nông Lâm University in HCM City.
Adding to that, while the Ministry states that areas for growing trees in large cities should be at least 4 to 7sq.m per capita, most cities in Việt Nam have very modest numbers.
In particular, Hà Nội has 2.06sq.m of tree growing area per person, Đà Nẵng 2.4sq.m per person, Hải Phòng 3.41sq.m per person, Huế 12.9sq.m per person, Vinh 10.5sq.m per person, Vũng Tàu 10sq.m per person, and Nam Định 5.39sq.m per person.
Cities and municipalities have set plans and projects to enhance green coverage, with around 236,000 trees expected to be planted in HCM City, one million in Hà Nội, 350,000 in Đà Nẵng, 38,000 in Vũng Tàu, 65,000 in Huế, and 54,000 in Quy Nhơn.
This forms part of the actions taken in response to the government's programme of growing one billion trees in Việt Nam during the 2021-2025 period.
Programmes for upgrading public parks have also been carried out.
To get this done, HCM City aims to increase its tree density to 0.65sq.m per person by 2025 by adding 150 hectares of parks and 10 hectares of public greenery.
Hà Nội plans to renovate 45 current parks and flower gardens and build six new parks that equate to a total of 296 hectares to better serve local people.
There are still challenges facing the national programme, one of which is the shortage of non-budget capital, said the Ministry, with investments used for improving parks and green areas being mobilised mainly from the State budget.
This is attributed to the lack of regulations and methods for drawing and using off-budget funding, as provincial and city People’s Committees are not authorised to actively use money from the State budget.
Several localities have also not developed a proper green development plan nor a long-term investment plan on land designated for building parks and green areas.
To handle the problems, the Ministry of Construction has proposed the government make more mechanisms and policies to help develop green areas and parks around cities.
Approved by the Prime Minister in April 2023, the government's programme to grow one billion trees in Việt Nam during the 2021-2025 period aims to plant 690 million trees in urban and rural areas and 310 million trees in protective, special-use, and production forests. — VNS