In 2 years, Gurugram lost highest forest cover in Haryana: Report

In the past two years, Gurugram has lost 2.47 square kilometers of forest cover and has 113.71 sq km of green cover at present, which is 9.04% of the total geographical area of the district, the report said
Forest department officials said that the loss of forest cover in Gurugram can primarily be attributed to the different development projects that have been undertaken impacting the forest areas. (HT archive)
Forest department officials said that the loss of forest cover in Gurugram can primarily be attributed to the different development projects that have been undertaken impacting the forest areas. (HT archive)
Published on Jan 14, 2022 01:05 AM IST
Copy Link
BySuparna Roy

In Haryana, the loss of forest cover has been the highest in Gurugram district since 2019, according to the State of Forest Report 2021 released by the Forest Survey of India on Thursday.

In the past two years, Gurugram has lost 2.47 square kilometers of forest cover and has 113.71 sq km of green cover at present, which is 9.04% of the total geographical area of the district, the report said.

Overall, the state of Haryana has 1603.48 sq km as forest area, which is 3.63% of its total geographical area. In terms of area, the state has gained only 1.04 sq km of forest cover in the past two years.

Forest department officials said that the loss of forest cover in Gurugram can primarily be attributed to the different development projects that have been undertaken impacting the forest areas.

VS Tanwar, principal chief conservator of forest for Haryana, said, “We are finding out the possible reasons for loss in forest in Gurugram, and I conducted a meeting with senior officials regarding this today (Thursday). Mainly, we have lost maximum forest cover due to road widening, recarpeting of roads and different developmental works. We have also noticed that we are not able to implement our programme of agro-forestry properly, which can also be one of the reasons. We are studying the report in detail and will analyse the reasons further.”

According to the report, neighbouring Faridabad district has lost 0.71 sq km of forest cover since 2019 and has 79.23 sq km under forest cover at present, which is 10.69% of the district’s total geographical area.

In Gurugram and Faridabad districts, Aravallis are the primary forest cover, which lacks the tag of deemed forest or legal protection and is marred by anthropogenic pressures like roads cutting, construction of farm houses, luxury hotels, among others.

Chetan Agarwal, a city-based environment analyst, said, “Virtually all of the forest cover of Gurugram is concentrated in the Aravallis. The forest cover in the district is already so less with just 9% of the total area and with that also if 247 hectares is lost in two years, then it raises questions on extent of legal protection and practical enforcement. Protecting Aravallis by giving them legal status of forests and keeping them under natural conservation zone is the only way to save the remaining forest cover.”

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
Close Story
SHARE
Story Saved
×
Saved Articles
Following
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Tuesday, January 18, 2022