Nghe An Province, April 29, 2011 – The Nghe An People’s Committee officially announced UNESCO’s recognition of Western Nghe An as a Biosphere Reserve in a ceremony on Friday, making it the eighth such UNESCO site in Viet Nam.
Recognized for its remarkable biodiversity and cultural heritage, the Western Nghe An Biosphere Reserve borders Laos and covers more than 1.3 million hectares in northern Viet Nam. The site contains the country’s only remaining unexplored primary forest, is populated by more than 800 thousands people from seven ethnic minority groups and is home to a wide range of flora and fauna, including more than 70 plant and 80 animal species listed as rare and endangered.
UNESCO began its ‘Man and the Biosphere Programme’ (MAB) in 1971 as a means to promote interdisciplinary approaches to management, research and education in ecosystem conservation and sustainable use of natural resources. Western Nghe An has met the criteria set out by UNESCO for a Biosphere Reserve and as such may now benefit from programming that aims to balance the site’s economic and social development with conservation of biological and cultural diversity. Western Nghe An is also included in the World Network of Biosphere Reserves, an association of 563 sites in 110 countries that exchange knowledge and experience with the goal of promoting conservation, economic development, and research and education across national borders.
In addition to Western Nghe An, Viet Nam benefits from seven other UNESCO recognized Biosphere Reserves: the Can Gio mangrove , Cat Tien, the Cat Ba archipelago, the Red River Delta, Kien Giang, Mui Ca Mau and Cu Lao Cham.
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