flooded forest
Farms on flooded forest areas in Kampong Chhnang province in January 2022. (Kuoy Langdy/VOD)

How Cambodia’s Protected ‘Flooded Forests’ All but Disappeared

On paper, the protected biosphere reserve around Tonle Sap lake is a flooded forest. But across vast tracts in Kampong Chhnang, there are only rice fields or uncultivated wetlands, bare of any substantial trees. Decades of encroachment have only accelerated in recent years.

Most of the forests surrounding the Tonle Sap lake are dry in December, although a few are still flooded, as seen on December 17, 2019 in Siem Reap province's Treay village. (Roun Ry)

After Two Weeks, 20,000 Ha of Flooded Forests Recovered

Following Prime Minister Hun Sen’s command two weeks ago to stop the Tonle Sap’s destruction, provincial governors say they have retaken thousands of hectares of protected flooded forests but are still working on investigating perpetrators.