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Protecting Vietnam’s Threatened Forest

The vitality of our planet’s forests cannot be underestimated. From the air we breathe to the habitats of wild species and the livelihoods of communities, these luscious spaces are crucial ecosystems. Why is it therefore, that they are continuing to disappear?

The Pelorus Foundation recognises not only the importance of forests, but our significant dependence on them. A remarkable two billion people rely entirely on these ecosystems. With these facts in mind, our involvement with World Land Trust’s Carbon Balanced Programme is helping protect endangered forest through enabling individuals and organisations to offset their residual greenhouse gas emissions. For example, we are playing an active role in the protection of Khe Nuoc Trong forest.

Khe Nuoc Trong Forest

Home to around 10% of the world’s species is Vietnam, a country of international conservation importance. However with an escalating economy, Vietnam faces extreme pressure on its biodiversity, thus conservation support is essential.

Located in the Annamite Mountain Range of north central Vietnam lies a unique ecosystem and one of the last of its kind. Khe Nuoc Trong forest straddles a mixture of mountainous and flat terrain, and boasts many species found nowhere else on Earth. As well as three species of endangered primates, the critically endangered Sunda pangolin and oriental small-clawed otter also call these trees their home. It would be devastating to lose Vietnam’s rare wildlife forever.

As a Watershed Protection Forest, Khe Nuoc Trong is also a key source of clean water for local communities, additionally feeding rice paddies downstream. Through extraction of non-timber products, the local population depend upon this forest for their income, further demonstrating how significant this area is.

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Threats to the Forest

Despite being one of the best examples of its kind, Khe Nuoc Trong forest is amongst Vietnam’s most threatened. As well as suffering from the war, this forest has been fragmented, degraded and cleared for agriculture or plantations. In addition, illegal timber extraction and poaching for the wildlife and restaurant trade takes place and will only continue without strong, adequate enforcement.

The Project

The Pelorus Foundation is supporting World Land Trust’s partnership with Viet Nature Conservation Centre as they transform Khe Nuoc Trong to a Nature Reserve, thus increasing its levels of protection. This innovative project aims to reduce illegal wildlife hunting and restore degraded areas to ultimately relieve the forest of its pressures, enabling it to return to previous high-quality standards. To ensure the area is well protected, World Land Trust is funding an expert team of rangers to patrol the area, and will educate and support local communities and the government. Over the next 30 years, estimates dictate that the protection of Khe Nuoc Trong will sequester 50,000 tonnes of CO2 every year. 

Through conducting a carbon balance audit, the Pelorus Foundation can determine the precise cost of offsetting and in turn, can provide necessary funding for projects such as the crucial protection of Khe Nuoc Trong forest.