The news this January that two Chinese companies had signed an agreement to build the world’s tallest twin towers in Phnom Penh understandably raised eyebrows in Cambodia and around the region. As with so many grandiose plans, financing will be key for this reported $2.7 billion project in what remains one of Asia’s poorest nations, as measured by per capita gross domestic product.
But even if funding is finalised and construction begins, a critical question remains: How best to balance Asia’s drive to build higher with the need to respect what remains below? Former first lady Michelle Obama famously said at the 2016 Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, “When they go low, we go high.”
By: Heng Pheakdey
Globally, some 130,000 square kilometers of forest are lost each year. Although the rate has slowed recently, deforestation remains a major environmental issue contributing to climate change, loss of plants, wildlife, and livelihoods of people.
Deforestation is caused by a variety of factors. A common reason why people cut trees is because they believe that cutting down trees to sell as timber, or to grow plantations is more valuable than keeping them. Thus, one way to reduce forest destruction is to convince people that standing trees are indeed more valuable than felled ones.
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