Forest cover in J&K increases by 624 Sq Kms between 2015-19

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Total tree cover stands at 3.57%

The Ministry of Environment, Forest, and Climate Change Monday informed the Rajya Sabha that the total Tree cover of  of Jammu and Kashmir has decreased by 420 Sq Kms between the year 2015 to 2019 while the forest land has  increased by 624 Sq Kms.

The Ministry shared the information in Rajya Sabha in response to the question raised that includes the details of the increase/ decrease in forest cover during the last 3 years, deforestation programs, and funds utilized during the past year.

In a written response, in Rajya Sabha, the Minister of State (MoS) of Environment, Forest, and Climate Change said that the total forest cover of jammu and Kashmir has increased by  624 Sq Kms while the tree cover has decreased by 410 Sq Kms.

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The MoS, Babul Supriyo said that the Forest Survey of India (FSI), Dehradun, an organization under the Ministry carries out the assessment of forest cover of the country biennially since 1987, and the findings are published in the India State of Forest Report (ISFR).

The forest cover assessment is a wall-to-wall mapping exercise based on remote sensing supported by intensive ground verification and field data from National Forest Inventory. As per ISFR 2019, the total forest and tree cover of the country is 8,07,276 Sq Kms which are 24.56 per cent of the geographical area of the countrycountry.

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There is an increase of 13,209 square a kilometre of forest and tree cover at the national level in the ISFR-2019 as compared to the ISFR- 2015. The State/UTs wise details of the change in forest and tree cover as compared with ISFR-2019 and 2015.

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Various schemes are being implemented by the Central and State Government/Union Territory Administration for an increase in forest cover in the country. These include the National Afforestation Programme (NAP) and Green India Mission (GIM) being implemented by the Ministry of Environment, Forest, and Climate Change.

In a written detailed figures including J&K’s, the MoS said that a total of 624 Square Kilometers have been increased to the forest land and the graph of tree cover has come down by 410 square kilometres.

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It said that Jammu and Kashmir have a total of 2,22,236 Sq Kms geographical area of which the forest cover comprises 23,612 Sq Kms taking the total percentage to 10.62.

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It also said that the total tree cover includes 7,944 Sq Kms taking the total percentage to 3.57—(KNO)

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