State’s forest cover up by 8 sqkm in 2 years: Survey
ccording to the data collated during the FSI survey, over the last two years, the forest cover in Gurgaon has increased by 1 square kilometregurgaon Updated: Feb 13, 2018 22:54 IST
In some boost to the shrinking forest cover in Haryana, the Forest Survey of India, 2017 report on Monday said that the there has been an increase in the extent of vegetation in the Aravalli forest range.
According to the data collated during the FSI survey, over the last two years, the forest cover in Gurgaon has increased by 1 square kilometre and that of Faridabad has rise by 5 square kilometres. The survey also points to a growth in Mewat’s green cover by 2 square kilometres, while the vegetation in Hisar has also increased by 3 square kilometres. However, the extent of vegetation in the Shivalik range remains the same, according to the survey.
The FSI findings assume significance as it serves to allay fears of shrinking green cover in a state, which has the second lowest forest cover in the country after Punjab.
The survey report further states that in the same period when the green cover in the Aravalli forest range in south Haryana district saw a significant rise, there was no increase in the extent of vegetation in the Panchkula and Yamunanagar areas in the Shivalik range.
However, overall, the survey report paints a positive picture in terms of the state’s green cover as it states that the state’s forest cover has increased by 8 square kilometres over the last two years.
However, since satellite imagery used to collate the data during the survey was from October to December 2015, experts said that the ground reality in terms of the extent of forest cover could be different from what the survey report suggests.
“In many areas of Haryana, the extent of vegetation has declined due to rampant tree felling and encroachment. The areas mostly affected include Karnal, Kurukshetra, Palwal and Mahendragarh,” D Hembram, conservator of forest, forest department, south Haryana, said.
The report says that the net increase in the extent of forest cover in the state by 8 square kilometres over the last couple of years could be attributed to the increase in tree cover outside recorded forest area.
“The forest cover of the state is 1,588 square kilometre, which is 3.59% of the state’s geographical data. The reserve, protected and unclassed forests constitute 15.97%, 74.28% and 9.74% respectively,” the FSI, 2017 survey report says.
As per the 2015 survey report, Haryana had 1,580 square kilometre of forest cover. In percentage terms, the forest cover has increased from 3.58% to 3.59 % of the geographical area.