The Haryana forest department has started an exercise to map forest areas, plantation and areas damaged by fire using the global positioning system (GPS).
The department will also use satellite pictures to evaluate changes in the forest and plantation area.
Forest and environment minister Capt Ajay Singh Yadav on Sunday said that management information system and geographical information system were being developed by the department for better harnessing of accounts, administration, forest, wildlife and personnel management.
Capt Yadav said that a memorandum of understanding to set up geomatics facility and spatial information system had been signed between the department and the Haryana Space Application and Research Centre and National Remote Sensing Centre and Indian Space Research Organisation, Hyderabad.
Spatial data bases are being developed for Yamunanagar and Morni forest divisions as a pilot project.
The minister said that with a view to containing environmental pollution caused by vehicles, a scheme called extension forestry on farm land along the highways had been started. Under the scheme, plantation was being carried out by the department on farm lands along the highways in the shape of shelterbelts, he said.
"The department and farmers jointly protect these plantations for three years after which they are handed over to the farmers. During the current year, the state government plans to spend Rs 9 crore on the scheme," he added.