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Vietnam Unveils Program to Increase National Forest Coverage to 42% by 2020

In an effort to improve Vietnam’s natural environment, the government recently revealed an ambitious plan to boost the country’s forested area to 42% of the nation's total land area by 2020.

According to Dan Tri, the target is part of a comprehensive government program, called REDD+, to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through a range of measures. These include planting more trees, curbing deforestation and encouraging sustainable management of forest resources.

By 2030, officials aim to bring national forest coverage to 45% and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 8%. At the moment, forests only make up 41% of Vietnam's total land area.

VnExpress reports that by 2020, the government plans to reach 14.4 million hectares of forested area, mainly through providing assistance to the agriculture and aquaculture sectors so that the industries don’t need to clear nearby forests for planting.

At the end of 2015, national statistics showed that Vietnam had around 14 million hectares of forest, which includes 10.2 million hectares of natural forest and 3.9 million hectares of replanted forest.

The entire campaign will happen on a national scale from 2017 to 2030, starting with regions that are at higher risk of deforestation and more vulnerable to climate change.

Meanwhile, World Bank statistics show that in 2015 Vietnam's forest cover stood at 47.6%

[Photo via National Geographic]

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