As the forests are home to an abundant variety of plant and animal life, many of which are endemic only to this part of the world, the conservation and protection of these biological and genetic resources can only be effectively executed if forested lands are designated as Totally Protected Area (TPA) where certain human activities are strictly regulated by law. Hence, the classification of forested lands as National Parks, Wildlife Sanctuaries, Wildlife Rehabilitation Centres, Nature Reserves and Marine Parks within the designated TPA system under the provisions of the National Parks and Nature Researve Ordinance 1998 and Wild Life Protection Ordinance 1998 respectively has put the State in the forefront in biodiversity conservation.
Sarawak has designated 0.55 million hectares, or 4.6% of Sarawak's total area, of forests for the in situ conservation of its biological and genetic resources under the TPA system. Rare and threatened plants are also conserved, on the ex situ basis, in the Botanical Research Centre, Kuching. Small-scale ex situ conservation of wildlife is carried out in the Semengoh Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre as well as in Matang Wildlife Centre. All the major habitat types in Sarawak are also represented in the Totally Protected Areas.
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