People’s Consideration for Natural Environment
- By Maw Lin
- With the advancement of science and technology, people come to be more and more convinced of how much nature protects human beings from elements of risk and danger. Had we managed to explore and utilize protections given to humans by the nature, these would protect us from unpredictable natural disasters, to some extent. These natural gifts include inter alia, mangroves.
Mangroves are learnt to remarkably reduce heights and impacts of tides and storms approaching coastal areas from the sea. The Nargis Storm had proved how much great the destructive forces of storms and tides were. Yet, we have found that villages surrounded by mangroves withstood the impact of such an extremely great storm. These mangroves not only protect human beings from dangers of storms, but also they make marine creatures grow in number for the survival of villagers. And, these mangroves help the conservation of the soil by which villages are situated. Simultaneously they protect bank erosions as well. Moreover, mangroves surrounding coasts can hinder or reduce moving inland of saltwater intrusion.
According to the findings by professional surveyors, there were over 0.6 million acreage of mangroves in the year—1942 in Myanmar, but there were only 12 percent of that amount left in 1995, it was learnt. It is really frightening to hear that we are losing such amounts of mangroves that are of great value for us. Excessive utilization of cut mangroves as firewood and char-coal, extension of farming acreages for reclamation by cutting mangroves and building ponds for breeding fish and prawns are the causes of destruction of mangroves.
The State Government is performing the tasks of protection, conservation and extension of mangroves, with the assistance of civil societies from home and abroad. In doing so, we are definitely required to get technical and financial aids. Yet, it is assumed that we still fail to pay attention to the matter which is fundamentally more important than others, to the extent we should amend. That is none other than the matter of educating the usefulness of mangroves to all the citizens including villagers since their younger ages. World histories prove that enthusiastic and active participation of the people can create epoch-making events. Accordingly, we deeply urge for all the national forces including the State Government to make concerted efforts to create people’s consideration for natural environment.
(Translated by Khin Maung Oo)