Thai Days: Proposed Road Threatens World Renowned Cambodian Forest and Potential Tiger Reintroduction Site.

by

Hugh Paxton’s Blog here, again. More ghastly news!

Again!

Tomorrow – yes, tomorrow. I promise! – I’m going to post something cheerful and up beat!

Something to bring a smile to one’s face and a spring to one’s step! A twinkle to one’s eye and an urge to give a complete stranger a nudge, wink and a brief, uninvited rendition of “Think to yourself, it’s a wonderful world!”

You will then be arrested.

Tomorrow there will be no mention of genocide. Islamists. Eco holocausts. Women using imported French snails as a facial cleanser (front page, Bangkok Post newspaper today, a woman in Chiang Mai with a face covered in expensive imported snails – the latest beauty fad. Snails! Imported snails! From France! )

Tomorrow will be a Hugh Paxton Good News Day.

Today, we’ll stick to the usual lengthy nightmares. WWF goes first. Then I’ll bang off INTERPOL’s latest on West African fish piracy.

I asked my beloved daughter Annabel why she has more followers on her Annabel’s Dog Blog than I have on my Hugh Paxton’s Blog and she got to the point. “Your Blogs great but it’s a bit boring and too long.”

Over to WWF and Lee!

From: Lee Poston [mailto:lee.poston@wwfgreatermekong.org]
Sent: Thursday, January 29, 2015 12:11 PM
To: undisclosed-recipients:
Subject: Proposed Road Threatens World Renowned Cambodian Forest and Potential Tiger Reintroduction Site.

WWF Urges Cancellation of New Road Plan That Threatens World Renowned Cambodian Forest

Phnom Penh, 29th January, 2015– A proposed new road and border crossing would do irreversible damage to Cambodia’s Mondulkiri Protected Forest — a potential UNESCO World Heritage site — which supports some of Southeast Asia’s most threatened species and is the proposed site for the country’s tiger reintroduction plans, WWF said today.

The Srea Ampom-Kbal Damrei proposed road and border crossing will have limited developmental and economic benefits while threatening one of Cambodia’s iconic protected areas and a huge source of natural resources, environmental capital, and ecosystem services.

“Mondulkiri Protected Forest is a treasure trove of species and a vital lifeline for communities who rely on its ecosystem services to provide them fresh water, food and livelihoods,” said Sam Ath Chhith, Country Director of WWF-Cambodia. “This will not benefit local villages and is completely without merit.” The proposed road will cut through 36 km of the Mondulkiri Protected Forest, while not improving access to any existing villages.

Mondulkiri Protected Forest is a haven for threatened species including Giant Ibis, the national bird of Cambodia, Asian elephant, leopard, Siamese crocodile, 230 bird species and the world’s largest population of Banteng, an endangered species of wild cattle. In the 1950’s the region’s dry forests were dubbed the ‘Serengeti of Asia’ because of their massive concentration of large mammals. Mondulkiri is also the site of the Royal Government of Cambodia’s proposed plan to restore tiger populations within the country.

“This proposed road is completely incompatible with tiger restoration and should be cancelled immediately as a clear sign of Cambodia’s proud status as a leader in sustainable development,” said Teak Seng, WWF-Greater Mekong Regional Conservation Director.

If tigers are restored to Mondulkiri it could have major potential for tourism that could bring long-term revenue to local communities and the provincial government. Tigers are also a powerful tool to attract additional funding for effective protected area management and conservation law enforcement.

Roads however, degrade tiger habitat and allow poachers access into parts of the forest previously inaccessible. The proposed road could derail the potential tiger restoration and increase wildlife trafficking between Cambodia and Vietnam. Additional threats include disruption of animal migration and movement, road kills from traffic and an overall degradation of the quality of the protected area.

“There is simply too much to lose and very little to gain if this road is built,” Sam Ath Chhith said. “Mondulkiri Protected Forest is without question a world class ecosystem and it should remain exactly what its name says – ‘protected’ for future generations of both people and wildlife.”

For further information:

Un Chakrey (Mr), Communications Manager , tel. +855 23 218 034, email: chakrey.un

Lee Poston, Communications Director, WWF-Greater Mekong

Tel: +1 202 299 6442 Email: lee.poston

Download photos and map at

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/jzg6800v2a37k5e/AACSyVwuEbgjbDtGoCc07WJJa?dl=0

About WWF

WWF is one of the world’s largest and most respected independent conservation organizations, with over 5 million supporters and a global network active in over 100 countries. WWF’s mission is to stop the degradation of the earth’s natural environment and to build a future in which humans live in harmony with nature, by conserving the world’s biological diversity, ensuring that the use of renewable natural resources is sustainable, and promoting the reduction of pollution and wasteful consumption.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: