Arunachal Lost Maximum Forest Cover In 2021: Union Minister Choubey

This is mainly due to mainly due to anthropogenic pressure and developmental activities, minister of State for Environment Ashwini Choubey said.
Representative Image
Representative Image

The Centre on Thursday informed in the Rajya Sabha that the forest cover in the Northeast has reduced by 1,020 sq km in 2021 as compared to 2019.

This is mainly due to anthropogenic pressure and developmental activities, Union minister of state for environment, forest and climate change, Ashwini Choubey revealed.

While replying to a query on loss of forest and tree cover in the Northeast, the minister said that as per the latest India State of Forest Report (ISFR) 2021, the forest cover of the region stood at 1,69,521 sq km, while the tree cover stood at 4,574 sq km.

From 2019 to 2021, the forest cover declined by 1,020 sq km, while the tree cover increased by 365 sq km duirng the past two years.

"As per ISFR-2021, the total forest cover in the northeastern region of the country is 1,69,521 sq km, showing an overall decrease of 1,020 sq km, while the tree cover has increased by 365 sq km as compared to the previous assessment in 2019," he said.

"The loss in forest cover in the northeastern states may be attributed mainly to natural calamities, anthropogenic pressure, developmental activities and shifting cultivation practices," Choubey said in a written reply to the question.

The minister further informed that the maximum forest cover was lost in Arunachal Pradesh (257 sq km), followed by Manipur losing 249 sq km of forest area and Nagaland losing 235 sq km of forest cover.

Among the other northeastern states, Mizoram lost 186 sq km forest land, Meghalaya lost 73 sq km of forest land, Assam lost 15 sq km, Tripura four sq km and Sikkim lost a single sq km of forest land.

Listing out the steps taken by the Indian government to increase forest and tree cover in the country, the minister said the National Afforestation Programme (NAP) and Green India Mission (GIM) are being implemented by the Union environment ministry.

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