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Experts examine growing threat to Viet Nam's dwindling biodiversity

Update: May, 25/2015 - 09:04
An elephant is checked by experts after being rescued from a hunter's trap in Dak Lak Province. —VNA/VNS Photo Duong Giang

HA NOI (VNS) — Viet Nam's struggle with its degrading biodiversity was the top concern expressed by experts at a meeting commemorating International Day for Biological Diversity at Botanical Garden, Ha Noi, on Friday.

Every year some 3,700 to 4,500 wild animals are killed for consumption, decoration, medicinal purposes, as well as for domestication. The overexploitation of marine resources has put 80 per cent of the country's coral reefs at risk of extinction, while destructive methods followed by the fisheries industry threaten the country's marine ecosystem.

From 2010 to 2014, almost 15,000 cases were registered for violation of the country's forest protection laws and regulations, according to statistics from the Department of Biological Diversity under the Viet Nam Environment Administration (VEA).

Meanwhile, 25 alien species were sighted in the country. Of these, 15 were considered harmful to ecosystem, with the most noted case being the golden apple snails that cause the destruction of rice fields in Viet Nam, costing the country millions of dollars every year.

Deputy Head of the VEA Nguyen The Dong said that with over 10 per cent of the world's species found here, Viet Nam's ecosystem has been recognised as one that has huge biodiversity.

Dong noted that preserving the country's ecosystem has been a priority for the Government of Viet Nam.

The VEA has called for greater cooperation among local authorities and support from the public to put a stop to wild animal trafficking and take measures to preserve Viet Nam's biodiversity. — VNS

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