Winner of COFO 23 #ChampionTrees photo contest announced

28 July 2016, Rome - Sao Chan Elite of Cambodia has won the #COFO23 #ChampionTrees photo competition. His photo, Tree in Ta Prohm Temple, features a giant Spung tree (Tetrameles nudiflora) growing over the walls of the 12th-century Ta Prohm Temple in Siem Reap, Cambodia.

“People believe that the tree has a magic inside,” said Sao, 23, who works as a graphic designer at a marketing agency. “You can come to visit this amazing tree and you will not regret spending time in Cambodia.”

Launched in the run-up to the 23rd session of the Committee on Forestry (COFO 23), the contest challenged people to send in photos of extraordinary trees. The aim of the contest was to raise awareness about the fact that many trees are under pressure from changes in the uses of land, or from the effects of climate change such as increased weather events, forest fires and pests.

FAO received over 630 photos from 97 countries for the contest. A jury comprising the leaders of the Regional Forest Communicators Networks chose six finalists from a longlist of 30 photos. The six finalists were published on FAO's Facebook page and received almost 4,000 votes. Sao’s entry was a landslide winner with over 2,300 votes. He wins a trip to FAO headquarters in Rome for the celebrations of the International Day of Forests 2017.

The other finalists were César Antonio Jopia Quiñones (Chile), Sergio Paladino (Brazil), Kuntal Kumar Roy (India), Sudipto Das (India) and Caroline de Villiers (South Africa).

See the full longlist in the Flickr photo gallery here.

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last updated:  Thursday, July 28, 2016