12th February 1999

 

LECTURER ON AN ENVIRONMENTAL MISSION

 

A lecturer from the University of Lincolnshire & Humberside has been doing his bit to help protect a mangrove forest in Thailand.

 

David Butler, a senior lecturer in Environmental Studies, has just returned to his desk after working on the partnership conservation project, whose aim is to encourage local people to look after the Yaring mangrove forest on the south-eastern coast of Thailand.

 

“The project is essentially about raising awareness among the local communities of the benefits they can gain from managing the forest in a sustainable way,” said David, who has been involved in the work for two years and who has helped plan and develop a series of education-related initiatives at the forest.

 

The Yaring mangrove forest is the largest survivor of its kind in southern Thailand but is threatened by pollution, timber cutting and the reclamation of land for shrimp farm developments.

 

“Already a boardwalk trail stretching for two kilometres has been built to allow people to explore the forest,” David explained. “Interpretation boards along the route explain about the wildlife of the forest and the way in which the forest is managed.

 

“The trail gives people the opportunity to explore what is otherwise a very difficult area to gain access to - the forest floor floods at high tide and the vegetation is extremely dense, so the elevated boardwalk is essential.”

 

Over the next few months David will be working on an interpretation plan for the centre and devising education activity packs for local schools to use on visits.

 

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For more information contact:

 

Jez Ashberry, Press and Media Relations Manager

University of Lincolnshire & Humberside (tel: 01522 886042), or

 

David Butler, Senior Lecturer in Environmental Studies

University of Lincolnshire & Humberside (tel: 01472 315046)

 

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