The Vietnamese government has rejected proposals for the 135-MW Dong Nai 6 and 106-MW Dong Nai 6A hydropower projects, citing the results of a recent environmental impact report.
The study, submitted recently to Deputy Prime Minister Hoang Trung Hai, said the hydroelectric plants would destroy more than 325 hectares of forests -- 128 of which would include portions of the Cat Tien National Park near Ho Chi Minh City.
The projects would affect the Bau Sau wetlands located inside the park, the report said, violating terms of the Ramsar Convention's Laws of Biodiversity and Heritage.
The Ramsar Convention is an agreement between 165 member governments dictating the sustainable use of wetlands, and violations by the plants' developer, Dub Long Gia Lai Group, could cause the national park to lose its UNESCO world heritage recognition.
Cat Tien has been recognized by UNESCO as a "world biosphere reserve" for the 1,700 species of rare plants and 700 species of animals and birds, the organization noted.