Between 2003 and 2016, the forest fires have jumped by almost 38% from 24,450 to 33,664 shows the State of Forests report 2017 released by the environment ministry.
Strongly emphasising the increasingly green credentials of the country, Union Minister for Environment, Forest and Climate Change, has said that India has shown an increasing trend in the forest and tree cover, in comparison to the global trend of decreasing forest cover during the last decade. Releasing the India State of Forest Report (ISFR) 2017, Minister pointed out that India ranks among the top ten countries of the world in terms of forest area, despite the fact that none of the other 9 countries has a population density of more than 150 persons per sq km, compared to India, which has a population density of 382 persons per sq km. “India is ranked 10th in the world, with 24.4% of land area under forest and tree cover, even though it accounts for 2.4 % of the world surface area and sustains the needs of 17 % of human and 18 % livestock population”, the Minister said. He averred that despite such tremendous population and pressures of livestock on our forests, India has been able to preserve and expand its forest wealth. The Minister added that as per the latest FAO report, India is placed 8th in the list of Top Ten nations reporting the greatest annual net gain in forest area.
E-copy of this report are available in Library.