Illustrative image (Source: duanlamnghiep)

Hanoi (VNA) – Twenty-eight centrally-run coastal cities and provinces have planted 4,486 hectares of forests along their shores since the beginning of 2016, falling short of the quota set in a nationwide project to expand coastal forest coverage between 2015 and 2020.

Of the total, the area of new special and protection forests amounts to 3,884 hectares.

These localities have also revived 2,308 hectares of special and protection forests during the period.

The slow planting pace was due largely to difficulties facing local authorities when preparing for the project and adjusting to new regulations associated with the work.

Starting in 2015, the project aims for the growing of additional 46,058 hectares of coastal forests for an ultimate area of 356,753 hectares by 2020.

The move is expected to deal with rising sea level and provide a protective shield for the sea dyke system, infrastructure and biodiversity.

Vietnam is one of the five countries in the world most vulnerable to climate change and its rice granary – the Mekong Delta region – is among the three hardest hit deltas in the world.-VNA