Fri. May 17th, 2024

A Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA)-funded project has
relieved local people living in the buffer zone of Bach Ma National Park
of reliance on natural resources to make their living.

Covering
37,487 ha in the districts of Phu Loc and Nam Dong of the central
province of Thua Thien Hue, Bach Ma National Park is home to 2,373
species of plants, or 17 percent of the total floral species, and 1,715
species of fauna, or 7 percent of the country’s faunas.

As many as 12,000 households are residing in the buffer zone of the
park and their habit of intensively taking forest resources for granted
to sustain their livelihoods left ugly hard-to-cure scars on the area.

The
problem greatly concerned the Bach Ma National Park Management Board
which has then come up with the idea that the best way to protect and
preserve the Park is to create every possible condition it can to
support these people.

Receiving funding from JICA, the Bach Ma
National Park Management Board launched the Bach Ma Coal project in
July, 2008, targeting around 140 households in Phu Loc and Nam Dong
districts.

Through to March, 2013, benefiting households have
learnt how to produce charcoals made from rice husks and wood chips as
well as coal products to be used for cultivation and animal husbandry.

They
have mastered the technology to make Bokashi organic fertiliser and
pesticides from herbal vegetables such as gingers, garlic and hot
peppers, grow organic vegetables and raise organic livestock, which not
only serve their meals but also go to others’ dinner tables in Da
Nang and Thua Thien Hue.

According to experts from
the Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology of Japan, apart from
improving buffer zone residents’ incomes, the project has also raised
their awareness of protecting the environment and using organic products
for the sake of their healthy lives.

Since 2000,
the Bach Ma National Park community development centre has also received
consultancy and funding from the German Development Service (DED) for
forest preservation efforts.

The JICA-funded project
proved that when the living standards of buffer zone residents are
improved with new livelihoods, forest resources will be utilised wisely.-VNA

By vivian