Union Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Harsh Vardhan inaugurated a two-day conference on ‘Sustainable landscapes and forest ecosystems: Theory to Practice’ in New Delhi on 12 September 2017.
The minister launched the ‘Wood is Good’ campaign on the occasion under the Forest-Plus programme. The purpose of the campaign is to promote wood as a climate-friendly resource and substitute to materials like steel and plastic as it is a renewable resource, having zero carbon footprint, unlike other materials that leave carbon footprint in their production.
While emphasising on the need to create an enabling environment through small steps such as planting more trees, the environment minister urged the gathering to deliberate and come out with out-of-the-box ideas and solutions on increasing the forest cover much beyond the stipulated 33 percent.
“Innovation is the need of the hour. Innovation co-efficient now is more important than any other co-efficient”, Harsh Vardhan said.
The minister further added that the target is proposed to be achieved through a number of planned afforestation drives and initiatives. Referring to the forests being an integral part of Indian culture and tradition, Harsh Vardhan said that India has managed to successfully conserve and enhance its forest resources.
Main objectives of the conference:
• To explore issues and opportunities for ecosystem approach to land management in India.
• To discuss how the approaches and tools developed under the Forest-PLUS programme can be used to improve forest management in India.
• To document and disseminate that learning with a wider group.
The Partnership for Land Use Science (Forest-Plus)is a joint programme by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) to strengthen capacity for REDD (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation) implementation in India.
The programme will bring together experts from both India and the United States to develop tools, technologies and methods of forest management in order to meet the technical challenges of managing forests for the health of the ecosystem, carbon stocks, biodiversity and livelihood.
Who: Harsh Vardhan
Where: New Delhi