Eight Vietnamese undergrads from the country’s prestigious National University have been chosen to represent the country at the Asian Students Environment Platform (ASEP) 2018 in Malaysia this August, following their passing the submission round with a thesis on tropical rain forest.
The group’s thesis, “Gift from tropical rain forest”, draws upon the benefits of preserving the tropical rain forest as well as how young people can address deforestation.
Now that they have qualified for ASEP 2018, the team intends to make the most out of the opportunity to promote the welfare of Vietnam’s natural wonders, particular its rainforests.
By the forest
Much of Vietnam’s pride is centered around its richly endowed natural resources.
However, deforestation, one of its major environmental problems, is casting serious doubts on the future of its beauty.
Each year, thousands of hectares are cleared for timber and construction space.
The destruction has led to rise in natural disasters in Vietnam and given way to noticeable rises in temperature.
The latest devastating landslide-flash flood combo in Lai Chau Province, northwestern Vietnam, is proof.
In fact, when asked to evaluate deforestation in their own nation on the scale of five, the Vietnamese team wasn’t hesitant to give it a hazardous level of 3.5 to 4.
The assessment was not done on baseless ground.
Team member Pham Thi Thuy Hanh, 23, has firsthand experience with deforestation and its detrimental consequences, considering her hometown is situated in the rural countryside.
The relentless destruction of her region’s lush greenery, which in turn has given rise to flash floods and landslides, has haunted Hanh for as long as she remembers.
“What has happened in Lai Chau is just the beginning,” Hanh stressed.
“Should we neglect our responsibility to nature and continue to turn a blind eye to deforestation, the number of natural disasters will undoubtedly skyrocket,” she added.
For the forest
As all team members are well-versed in natural preservation activities, they expect the trip to yield lots of experience.
“ASEP 2018 will take us to Malaysia, where we will learn new approaches to our endeavor, as well as some environmental-friendly methods for harvesting,” team member Nguyen Thi Phuong remarked.
“This is also a chance for us to get acquainted with other peers from different nations who share our ideals. We might pull something out of it together,” she said.
Additionally, the team looks forward to researching other countries’ preservation laws and regulations, so that they can incorporate them into what is taking place in their own country.
“The forest is the gift of nature. Though everyone knows about its boon, as well as what is being wrought upon its livelihood, hardly anyone gives it second thought. That has to change,” Hanh concluded.
ASEP is an environmental platform held annually to endorse the growth of potential youths regarding the conservation of nature. It is mutually sponsored by Japan’s AEON Environmental Fund and Waseda University.
ASEP 2018 will be hosted by Malaysia in August. There will be 72 participants, hailing from various countries in the Southeast Asia region, with Korea, Japan, and China among the fold. Together, they will merge into research teams or debate groups to bring new ideas to the preservation table.