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Thread: Economic Valuation of TIGER RESERVES in India: SUNDARBANS : A VALUE+ Approach

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    Default Economic Valuation of TIGER RESERVES in India: SUNDARBANS : A VALUE+ Approach

    The Centre for Ecological Services Management (CESM) and Indian Institute of Forest Management (IIFM), Bhopal with support from National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) made first ever Economic Valuation of 6 tiger reserves in India.

    "..............These findings provide adequate justification for enhanced investment in such areas which is critical to ensure continued flow of vital life-supporting ecological, economic, social and cultural services from these genetic repositories."
    --wrote Shri Prakash Javadekar, Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) for environment, forests and climate change about the report.

    I would like to touch upon the pertinent points covering the Sundarbans Tiger Reserve (STR) falling within geographical boundary of India.

    1. The total area of Sundarbans Tiger Reserve is 2,585 sq. km ( Core: 1330 sq.km., buffer: 1255 sq.km )

    2. STR has at least 1,586 species of Protozoa and Animalia apart from 69 floral species belonging to 29 families.

    3. About 270,000 people live around fringe villages around STR.

    4. During 2013-14, a total of 157,600 man-days were generated by STR for various management activities in which local communities were involved. The economic value of employment generated by STR is estimated at Rs.3.25 crore per annum [@Rs.206 per man-day].

    5. The economic value of fish caught from STR is estimated at Rs.160 crore per annum. Fish being the main protein for the underprivileged communities living around STR, in true sense the economic value of STR for fishing is significant -- economically and culturally.

    6. The standing stock of timber in STR is estimated at Rs.62,870 crore. This is significantly higher than Corbett, Kaziranga, Kanha, Periyar and Ranthambhore -- the other 5 TRs included in the study.

    7. STR has Carbon stock of over 22.38 million tonnes.

    8. The net biosphere-atmosphere exchange of Carbon in Sundarbans is estimated at 2.79 tonnes per hectare per annum. Assuming this rate of Carbon sequestration across the entire forest area (1538 sq. km) of STR, annual quantity of carbon sequestered in STR is estimated at 0.43 million tonnes.

    9. Using social cost of Carbon for India the total economic value of Carbon sequestered in STR is estimated at Rs.46.21 crore per annum.

    10. The capacity of sewage treatment plant required for Kolkata is 250 million litres per day for population estimated
    at 4.5 million. Considering the costs involved in operating such a plant, the economic value of waste assimilation
    services attributable to STR for Kolkata alone is Rs.150 crore per annum.

    11. The service provided by STR in moderating cyclones is worth Rs.27.5 crore per annum.

    (Main Source: The Times of India, Kolkata : 8 April 2015)
    Last edited by Saktipada Panigrahi; 09-04-2015 at 03:29 PM.

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    Very valuable information. I hope this economic study of STR and other tiger reserves will help to get more focus in conserving our national parks. Thanks for sharing.

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    Our traditional GDP calculations doesn't take into account the wealth accruing from our forests and environment. The british took an extremely narrow view of our forests and only saw forests as a source of timbre. So an evaluation of forests to include non-timbre components is a positive move. However, merely mentioning the total value of timbre doesn't make sense as we are not going to cut off all the trees. Infact, looking at this, the muddle headed public representatives can demand harvesting the timbre arguing that such important resource is lying idle.

    The mangroves play a very important role in waste treatment, as brought out in the report. Not many people are aware of it. Also cutting down the mangroves will also result in less of fish. With mangroves vanishing from much of our coastal areas, one can realise how much loss we have faced.

    This is a positive move. However, when one looks at the figures, the timber figures prominently.

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    In my view this valuation may be to make a case of extracting the so called value or to make a public opinion at least. Why the hell we would want everything to be measured in terms of money. In that case should we just kill all the handicapped (mentally or physically) people. Can any one convince the parents who have such a child by presenting an economic analysis.
    Why do not we take it as a morally binding duty to at least preserve what is remaining for other organisms. How on the earth can we think that our GOD only cares about humans. Or we are waiting for mother nature to teach a befitting lesson to humanity, the biggest tragedy will be that it will be the future generations who will borne the maximum burnt of our folly

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