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UNESCO recognizes VN’s two world biosphere reserves

VGP - Cà Mau Cape and Chàm Islands were officially recognized by UNESCO as the world's biosphere reserves at the 21st session of the Man and the Biosphere Program International Coordinating Council (MAB/ICC) opened on May 25-29 in the Jeju Island of the Republic of Korea.

May 27, 2009 8:27 AM GMT+7

A corner of Chàm Islands

Before the good news released from the working session, over 600 households and organizations on the Chàm Islands together had signed in a joint commitment paper to protect the environment through many practical daily activities.

The authority of Tân Hiệp Commune, where the Chàm Islands located, freely provided more than 3,000 destroyable nylon bags to local families and tourists staying on the islands. At the same time, the municipal authority of Hội An city also ask local residents and tourists not to bring nylon bags to the Chàm Islands.

The Chàm Islands meet UNESCO's criteria on history and biodiversity.

The site boasts for its abundant fauna and flora in 1,549 hectares of natural forest and 6,716 hectares of water surface, with many endangered species.

Specifically, its 500 ha of seaweed and 165 ha of coral reef form the habitat of 188 coral species from 61 genera of 13 families and 202 fish species from 85 genera of 36 families.

Cà Mau National Park

Archeologists have also found a great number of relics of different cultures which once existed in Việt Nam, like Sa Huỳnh, Champa, and Đại Việt, proving the assumption that the Chàm Islands functioned as a seaport for international ships.

Meanwhile, covering an area of 371,506 hectares, the Cà Mau Cape Biosphere Reserve has three zones: The core (17,329 ha), the buffer zone (43,309 ha), and the transitional zone (310,868 ha).

The core consists of three sub-zones, including the Cà Mau Cape National Park, U Minh Hạ National Park, and the coastal forest belt. The site is home to several typical ecosystems like mangrove forests, muddy wetlands, and sea.

Chàm islands eyes world biosphere reserve status

By Hải Minh