The Langbiang Natural Reserve in the Central Highlands province of Lam Dong has been listed among UNESCO biosphere reserves.

The recognition was made on June 9 at the 27th session of the International Co-ordinating Council (ICC) of the Man and Biosphere Programme (MAB) in Paris, France.

The Langbiang reserve covers an area of 275,439 hectares to the north of Lam Dong with its core area of 56,000ha encompassing Bidoup-Nui Ba National Park. An 86,000-hectare buffer zone, in which human settlement is permitted, surrounds the reserve’s core. The remaining 118,000ha comprise a wide transitional area covering parts of Da Lat city and Lac Duong, Lam Ha, Duc Trong and Don Duong districts.

The core area, a national centre for biodiversity conservation, is home to more than 2,000 flora species and nearly 400 fauna species, of which 153 species named in Vietnam’s Red Data Book and 154 included in the red list of the International Union for Conservation of Nature.

The World Wildlife Fund regarded the area as first priority in its preservation programme for the southern part of Mount Truong Son.

Vice Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee Pham S expressed his delight towards Langbiang’s new title, while considering the UNESCO recognition as a challenge and force for greater efforts to be done in developing and protecting the wildlife reserve.

Pham Sanh Chau , General Secretary of the Vietnam National UNESCO Committee, stated it is the UNESCO acknowledgement of Vietnamese contribution towards international treaties on environment and bio-diversity conservation issues signed by the country.

Relevant agencies are designing a number of action plans, including the establishment of a management board and a technical project supported by Japanese Government. Langbiang will strengthen its connection with domestic and international natural reserve networks in a bid to exchange expertise for more effective conservation outcomes.

Other UNESCO-recognised Biosphere Reserves in Vietnam: Can Gio Mangrove Swamp, Cat Ba, Cat Tien, Cu Lao Cham-Hoi An, Kien Giang, Mui Ca Mau, the Red River Delta, and Western Nghe An.-VNA