Programme launched to rehabilitate land in degraded forest areas

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Agriculture minister Veng Sakhon visits degraded land in Siem Reap province. Veng Sakhon via facebook

A project to rehabilitate degraded forest land through the development of integrated agriculture and agroforestry to improve the livelihoods of local residents is being implemented by the Forestry Administration’s Institute for Forest and Wildlife Research and Development (IRD).

The project aimed to train farmers who depend on the forest for a living and to shift cultivating practices to mixed agriculture and agroforestry to alleviate pressure on the forest, IRD director Sokh Heng said on July 14.

“This project is funded by the Mekong-Lancang Cooperation Special Fund for a two-year period [2018-2020] with a budget of $500,000.

“So far, 90 per cent of the plan has been achieved. However, the outbreak of Covid-19 has forced the project to be delayed until the end of 2021,” he said.

The main achievements of the project so far, according to Heng, are organising five training sessions attended by 109 people.

The project emphasised controlling nutrients for crops and vegetables, mixed farming, animal husbandry, sustainable land management, monitoring and evaluation of forests and forest resources.

“We want to increase people’s knowledge of tropical governance, sustainable land management and climate change.

“We also want to reduce the erosion of different land types through the development of agricultural and reforestation techniques, the exchange of information, exchanging knowledge of land use experiences and improve living standards with study visits to Vietnam and Thailand,” he said.

Heng said he had selected three farmers to lead the launch of the project in Khun Ream commune of Siem Reap province’s Banteay Srei district. The work will begin with developing a plan to implement mixed farming, land clearing for growing vegetables, building a composting hall and raising livestock and fish, among others.

“In 2018, 1ha of land produced cassava worth 480,000 riel [$120], but in 2020 farmers sold the crop for 2,160,000 riel. As for organic vegetables, farmers’ income increased from 320,000 to 3,650,000 riel,” he said.Orm Bunthoeurn

A PROJECT to rehabilitate degraded forest land through the development of integrated agriculture and agroforestry to improve the livelihoods of local residents is being implemented by the Forestry Administration’s Institute for Forest and Wildlife Research and Development (IRD).

The project aimed to train farmers who depend on the forest for a living and to shift cultivating practices to mixed agriculture and agroforestry to alleviate pressure on the forest, IRD director Sokh Heng said on July 14.

“This project is funded by the Mekong-Lancang Cooperation Special Fund for a two-year period [2018-2020] with a budget of $500,000.

“So far, 90 per cent of the plan has been achieved. However, the outbreak of Covid-19 has forced the project to be delayed until the end of 2021,” he said.

The main achievements of the project so far, according to Heng, are organising five training sessions attended by 109 people.

The project emphasised controlling nutrients for crops and vegetables, mixed farming, animal husbandry, sustainable land management, monitoring and evaluation of forests and forest resources.

“We want to increase people’s knowledge of tropical governance, sustainable land management and climate change.

“We also want to reduce the erosion of different land types through the development of agricultural and reforestation techniques, the exchange of information, exchanging knowledge of land use experiences and improve living standards with study visits to Vietnam and Thailand,” he said.

Heng said he had selected three farmers to lead the launch of the project in Khun Ream commune of Siem Reap province’s Banteay Srei district. The work will begin with developing a plan to implement mixed farming, land clearing for growing vegetables, building a composting hall and raising livestock and fish, among others.

“In 2018, 1ha of land produced cassava worth 480,000 riel [$120], but in 2020 farmers sold the crop for 2,160,000 riel. As for organic vegetables, farmers’ income increased from 320,000 to 3,650,000 riel,” he said.