As the Thai government plans reforestation, local voices must be heard

By Lena Buell, RECOFTC Assistant Communications Officer

Waves approach the mangrove coast in Trat, Thailand, forests, climate change, disasters

Mangrove forests, like this one in Trat, Thailand, can help mitigate the impacts of severe weather events (Photo Credit: Estelle Srivijittakar)

In late February, Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra announced the government would invest 3 billion baht in reforestation and preservation activities around the country, following an audience with His Royal Highness the King of Thailand in which His Majesty urged the government to focus on reforestation initiatives.

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Films a Powerful Medium to Protect Forests and Empower Local Communities

How can the media support environmental conservation? One approach is to tell the stories of the importance of these natural resources and the people fighting to protect them.

A packed audience watches Hope in a Changing Climate

A packed audience watches Hope in a Changing Climate

The first Bangkok International Forest Film Festival, held 17-19 February 2012 to commemorate the 25th anniversary of RECOFTC – The Center for People and Forests, sought to bring these messages to a wider audience and encourage individuals to act through inspirational tales from around the world. As Prayuth Lorsuwanasiri, Deputy Director General of the Royal Forest Department, Thailand, said in his opening remarks, “Today marks an opportunity, through this partnership, to spread awareness about protecting our natural resources. …I am confident these movies will be useful for our audience, especially for the youth, and bring more accountability to the world at large.”

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