Govt working on satellite mechanism to monitor forestation, says Javadekar

Several environmentalists have complained about the proposed dilutions since the draft EIA notification was leaked

A satellite-based mechanism to monitor areas under green cover and the growth of saplings planted there is being developed by the government, Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar said on Saturday.

The Environment minister said some states have made significant achievements in nurturing planted saplings to their full growth.

"We are also making an effort in this direction by developing a mechanism for the minute detailing of the forestation at the (given) geo-coordinates and monitoring of growth of the planted saplings, with the use of satellite.

"Twelve crore saplings were planted in last five years. Data on the growth of these saplings will be available in public domain. We are developing a mechanism of their inspection through satellite," he said.

The Compensatory Afforestation Fund Management and Planning Authority (CAMPA) funds to the tune of Rs 47,000 crore will be utilised for greening India, he said after a meeting with the forest ministers and officials of various states.

The minister said "very positive discussions" on issues like the use of CAMPA fund for forestation, water conservation, fodder augmentation and moisture management in the forests, besides the eradication of Lantana weed were held in the meeting.

"There were very positive discussions on how to utilise CAMPA fund more effectively and create more green cover with water and fodder augmentation and moisture management in forest areas so as to avoid human-animal conflict and improve the quality of forest," he said.

In August this year, the Environment minister handed over Rs 47,436 crore of CAMPA funds to various states for the promotion of afforestation and achieving green objective of the country.

In the wake of under-utilisation of money for compensatory afforestation, the Supreme Court in 2001 had ordered for coming up with CAMPA fund.

In 2009, the Supreme Court permitted release of Rs 1,000 crore every year to the states and Union territories for compensatory afforestation and other activities.



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