The main goal of Ministry of Environment is to protect the environment and conserve natural resources in such a way as to ensure sustainable development, environmental quality and human health through the integration of an environmental strategic plan and vision that contributes to socio-economic development and reduces poverty.
In 1993, the General Department of Administration for Nature Conservation and Protection (GDANCP), Ministry of Environment, Royal Government of Cambodia, was a Department for Nature Conservation and Protection. It was later promoted to be GDANCP by government sub decree No. 37 on the Promotion of Department of Nature Conservation and Protection of the Ministry of Environment (24 April 2008). Other relevant legal tools which were endorsed by the Royal Government of Cambodia and have been implemented to manage natural resources and biodiversity include: Law on Biosafety (18 February 2008); Royal decree on the creation and management of Tonle Sap Biosphere Reserve (10 April 2001); Sub decree on water pollution control (6 April 1999); Sub decree on solid waste management (27 April 1999); Sub decree on processes of environmental impact assessment (11 August 1999); Sub decree on the management of substantive pollutants of ozone layers (17 March 2005).
The GDANCP includes seven departments: Department of Administration, Planning, Accounting and Finance; Department of National Parks; Department of Wildlife Sanctuary; Department of Climate Change; Department of Wetland and Coastal Zones; Department of International Convention and Biodiversity; and the Department of Research and Community Protected Area Development.
The GDANCP is a major contributor to the country’s economy and sustainable development, including poverty reduction through the conservation and sustainable use of its biological, natural and cultural resources and other ecosystem services. It is responsible for the management, conservation and development of protected areas in line with policy of the Royal Government of Cambodia to ensure the conservation of natural resources, biodiversity and sustainable harvest of natural resources inside protected areas. It is entitled to establish organizational structures necessary for management of protected areas nationwide in line with protected area laws.