Hoang Lien Son forest dying

Hoang Lien Son forest dying

05 February 2014

published by http://english.vietnamnet.vn

Vietnam — Hoang Lien Son has been well known to all Vietnamese and a lot of foreign travelers as the great forest on the high mountain, with Fansipan, dubbed as the roof of Indochina.

Every weekend, hundreds of domestic and foreign travelers flock to the Sa Pa tourism resort to perform spectacular conquest “Trekking Fan” – climbing to the Fansipan mount at the height of 3,143 meters.

The travelers to Hoang Lien Son forest expect to meet in the forest thousands of centuries old big trees and tens of various precious woods. However, they would feel disappointed because a lot of the precious trees have disappeared recently.

Thick trees can be seen in the small areas of the forest, but with few precious woods in the lower land, near Sa Pa town, Highway 4D and Tram Ton area. At the height of 1,900-2,200 meters, there are only the roots of the big burnt trees left. If climbing further, one would only see young bamboo forests, because the other big trees were chopped down some time ago.

And even the invory forest is also at danger: it may get burnt if there is just a small fire.

According to the Hoang Lien Son National Park’s Board of Management, three big forest cases have happened since 2010. Meanwhile, local residents counted a lot of other small fires.

Forest fires occur every year. Especially, the fire in 2010, which last 15 days and burnt up to 3,000 hectares of old forest.

Another forest fire occurred in March 2012, which burnt 100 hectares of forest in the core area of Hoang Lien Son. The fire was so serious that the local authorities needed 1,500 people to join forces to extinguish the fire.

In early 2013, another serious fire took place in Hoang Lien Son.

However, Hoang Lien Son has been threatened not only by the forest fires, but by the deforestation as well. More and more people go to the forest to chop down old big trees to sell for money.

The residents in Sa Pa town said that after illegal lumberjacks cut old precious trees and carry wood out of the forest, Hmong ethnic minority people would go to the forest to pick up small branches left and set up a coal stove right in the forest.

The wood turns into charcoal which would be carried to the Sa Pa town for sale. More and more coal stoves have been set up in the forest, which means the higher and higher risks for the Hoang Lien Son forest.

The forest got fired many times. A lot of old precious trees have been logged illegally. Meanwhile, the underground water around Fansipan mount has seen serious decline. As a result, a vast invory bamboo forest in the core area of Hoang Lien Son national park is getting withered.

Dying invory bamboo forests can also be seen in other areas of Hoang Lien Son, in the communes of San Sa Ho, Ta Van and Ban Ho.

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