India’s Overall Forest Cover Increases, But 12 States See Dip

The report also said the country has also added 1,243 sq km of tree cover since 2015.

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India has added 6,778 sq km of forest area – an increase of 0.21 percent – between 2015 and 2017 despite population and livestock pressures, said the India State Forest Report released on Tuesday, 13 February.

India has 7,08,273 square kilometres of forest, which reportedly amounts to 21.53 percent of the geographic area of the country. The report also said the country of nearly 1.3 billion people has also added 1,243 sq km of tree cover since 2015.

The total forest cover of the county is 708,273 sq km, which is 21.54 per cent of India’s geographical area. The tree cover of the country is estimated to be 93,815 sq km, which is 2.85 percent.
India State Forest Report

Union Environment Minister Harsh Vardhan, releasing the report, said that the news was good because it reverses the trend of decreasing forest cover the world over. He added that the country stands 10th in the world in terms of forest area and eighth in terms of annual forest gain.

The global trend is decreasing while in India the forest land is increasing. The good thing is that even if we talk of global ranking, the population density of top nine countries ahead of India in terms of forest cover is about 150 while for India it is 350.This means, we are doing good in terms of preservation and expansion despite pressure of population and livestock.
Union Environment Minister Harsh Vardhan
New Delhi: Tableau of Karnataka depicting the state’s rich and diverse forest wealth and flora and fauna at Rajpath during the full dress rehearsal for the Republic Day Parade 2018, in New Delhi Jan 23, 2018. (Photo: IANS/DPRO)
New Delhi: Tableau of Karnataka depicting the state’s rich and diverse forest wealth and flora and fauna at Rajpath during the full dress rehearsal for the Republic Day Parade 2018, in New Delhi Jan 23, 2018. (Photo: IANS/DPRO)

Andhra Pradesh, with 2,141 sq km increase in total forest and tree cover, topped the list, followed by Karnataka (1,101 sq km) and Kerala (1,043 sq km)

Very dense forests have expanded to 98,158 sq km in 2017 from 88,633 sq km in 2015.

However, on the darker side, 12 states and Union territories have seen a dip in their forest cover. These include Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and six naturally rich states in northeast -- Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim , Arunachal Pradesh and Tripura.

(With inputs from IANS)

(This story was auto-published from a syndicated feed. No part of the story has been edited by The Quint.)

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