Combined royal reforestation principles
Apart from the Doi Tung Development Project in Chiang Rai Province, another project that is proof of the success of the royal development principles is the Nan Reforestation Project. Initiated in 2009, this integrated form of area-based development and reforestation was a joint effort between the MFLF and the Royal Initiative Discovery Foundation (RIDF).
The approaches included King Rama IX’s principles of “Three Forests, Four Benefits”, “Slow and fast growing trees” and “Natural Tree Regeneration”, Queen Sirikit’s principles of “People Living with Forests”, the Princess Mother’s principle “Cultivating Forests, Cultivating People”, and HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn’s principle “Forest Management by Upstream-Downstream (Holistic) Solutions”.
The project increased forest cover by 105,300 rai (50,300 rai of conservation forest, 21,300 rai of sustenance forest and 33,700 rai of economic forest). Economic forests provided a stable income so villagers did not have to rely on slash-and-burn farming. Watershed forests were revived, helping to prevent floods.
The Nan River contributes 45% of water to the Chao Phraya River. Without watershed forests to keep the flow of water in check upstream, there will be flooding in the central region as in the past.