It is said that the real wealth of nature can be touched only in a forest. Since the forest brings enormous benefits to mankind and animals, if the entire forest is destroyed, then the world will suffer severe drought which will eventually lead to the extinction of all beings on earth.
Prior to 1961, the kingdom of Thailand had an abundant forest area of about 53.33% of the country’s total land area. Unfortunately,a 1988 satellite photo survey showed that forest areas in Thailand had diminished to only about 28.03% of the country’s total land area. Most of the devasted forest areas are located in the northeast, the north, the upper part of the central plains and the west ; where there was an extensive slash-and-burn agricultural practice by villagers and illegal log poaching.
In order to preserve the kingdom’s natural resources, forest and wildlife which are the most valued treasure and heritage from our ancestors, various measures for forest preservation were implemented by the government; for example the establishment of a scheme for national forest preservation, natural parks, wildlife sanctuaries, cancellation of logging concessions and the encouragement of private participation in the preservation of forest and natural resources.
We must bear in mind that for many years both Their Majesties the King and Queen have always reminded their subjects to use the country’s natural resources with care especially forest which are the main source of water and a sanctuary of wildlife. In the past, wild animals were indiscriminately killed either for trophies or the satisfaction of their exotic culinary tastes. In addition, some wild animals were illegally sold in the markets while other were smuggled out of the country. Nowadays, killing and selling of animals of endangered species are totally prohibited. The Queen herself has initiated several conservation projects throughout Thailand, including the “Sirikit Forest Project” in the south and the “Forests Love Water” projects in areas throughout Thailand. To protect and preserve forest and natural resources effectively, everybody must bear responsibility and join hands together, otherwise our natural heritage will diminish within a short time and our new generation will be the one to suffer most due to our irresponsible practice.