As per the India State of Forest Report of 2019, 24.56% of the geographical land of India is under forest cover. The report registers an increase of 5,188 sq. km of forest and tree cover combined from the record, but Jammu and Kashmir has witnessed drastic forest reduction in the recent past.
As per the statistical figure; in 2010, Srinagar had 9.78 kha of tree cover, extending over 16% of its land area. In 2014, it lost 320 mha of tree cover, equivalent to 145t of CO₂ of emissions. From 2001 to 2020, Srinagar lost 13ha of tree cover, equivalent to a 0.11% decrease in tree cover since 2000, and 5.28kt of CO₂ emissions. In Srinagar, 1.0 kha of land has burned so far in 2021. This figure is unusually high compared to the total for previous years going back to 2001. The most fires recorded in a year was 2021, with 1.0 kha. These figures don’t include rural damage.
Similarly, In 2010, India had 31.3 Mha of natural forest, extending over 11% of its land area. In 2020, it lost 132 kha of natural forest, equivalent to 67.3 Mt of CO₂ of emissions.
Due to the daily depletion of forests, the ozone layer is getting thinner and irreparable damage is being done to the land. Forests are important not only for the survival of human beings but also for the survival of birds and animals. They are important for a balanced economy of the country. It is necessary to have forests on 20% of its area. Deforestation is one of the major problems in India. Pollution is increasing day by day due to deforestation. Timber mafia is a significant contributor in reducing the forest cover. The government should enact strict laws to curb timber mafia. Forests are an essential part of any country’s economy. Forests are a great source of natural resources.
The forest area in India is also declining due to deforestation. Forest land is being used to build houses. Forests are one of the important resources of the country and they cater to multiple needs of the country. Forests help in maintaining the fertility of land. Forest herbs are used in manufacturing medicine. Numerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and deer are found in forests. Forests are the biggest source of firewood. Forests add to the beauty of the land.
Forests protect humans and plants from the destruction and devastation of high winds and storms. Forests do not allow the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere to increase. Because they need this gas and they emit oxygen which is essential for human life.
unfortunately, human beings have become the biggest enemy of these trees today. Yes, these same trees fulfill the innumerable needs of this killer human being. If these plants are removed from earth, it is not possible to imagine human life. These are the trees that make environment beautiful. They play a key role in keeping air clean, reducing force of winds and storms, preventing water erosion, increasing oxygen and maintaining balance of the climate. The best solution to deforestation is to curb the felling of trees by enforcing a series of rules and laws to govern it
The dire consequences of deforestation are erratic snowfall, hotter summers, climate variability and change of precipitation and temperature. The series of frequent spells of rain in our country, on which our agriculture depends the most, has now largely disappeared. We can’t afford to be ignorant about this. Our complacency and indifference will put a heavy burden upon the children of tomorrow.
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are the personal opinions of the author. The facts, analysis, assumptions and perspective appearing in the article do not reflect the views of GK.