w w w . i n d i a w i l d s . c o m
home
about Sabyasachi Patra
diary
forums
image gallery
contact IndiaWilds
Home
About
Diary
Forums
Gallery
ContactUs

User Tag List

Results 1 to 4 of 4

Thread: Global Forest or Tree Canopy

  1. #1
    Join Date
    17-12-08
    Posts
    66
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Angry Global Forest or Tree Canopy

    NASA have done some excellent work to identify the Global Forest Cover that is left today. I believe you guys at India Wilds would be interested in this subject. Read all about it at http://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/fea...eight-map.html
    For ready ref I have attached a pic of what forest cover is left in India.
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Last edited by A.S.Chandrashekaran; 20-10-2010 at 07:17 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    17-12-08
    Location
    Bangalore
    Posts
    4,589
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default

    That is indeed a very shocking thing to see. To think that in the pre independence times, there used to be so much forest cover that human and animal confrontation was not in specific areas but pretty much over the country as we read from Jim Corbett and Kenneth Anderson's anecdotes. It is really sad the way things have turned out not just for India but for the world. Deforestation and habitat loss have led to extinction of various species from our ecosystem and if nothing is done soon, we might just lose some vital elements from nature without which the entire biome would just disintegrate. Hope we are as smart as we so vividly claim to be.
    Regards,
    Bibhav Behera
    www.bibhavbehera.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    24-11-08
    Location
    Bangalore
    Posts
    15,476
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default

    Really a disturbing fact. There is hardly any forest cover left. I hope people realise this soon, and make their choice between (so called) development and enviornment. We need more and more people to see this. Thanks for sharing.
    Regards,
    Mrudul Godbole

  4. #4
    Join Date
    24-11-08
    Location
    New Delhi
    Posts
    15,807
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    2 Thread(s)

    Default Importance of Native Forests

    I am sharing an article by Natasha Gilbert, published in the Deccan Herald regarding the forest cover. Together with the NASA report, it would make for good reading.
    Sabyasachi

    Importance of native forests
    Nature News

    India is among the most densely forested countries in the world, but native forests are disappearing, according to a recent analysis. The distinction between native and non-native trees is important for an accurate picture of the state of the world’s forests, reports Natasha Gilbert

    Native forests in India are disappearing at a rate of up to 2.7 percent per year. The figures, published in an analysis of the country’s forest cover, stand in stark contrast to those of a 2009 survey by an Indian governmental organisation, which said that forests have expanded by five percent over the past decade.

    India is among the most densely forested countries in the world, and in 2008, the government announced goals to increase forest cover by nearly 10 percent by 2012. The India State of Forest Report 2009 by the Forest Survey of India (FSI) indicated that the outlook was good. But William Laurance, a conservation biologist at James Cook University in Cairns, Queensland, Australia, and one of the authors of the analysis, to be published in the journal Conservation Letters, says that while the figures showing that forest cover in India has grown are “technically correct,” they are also “misleading”.

    “We found a very real and serious loss of native forest,” he says, adding that it could put India ahead of most other countries in terms of deforestation. Nature contacted the FSI for comment, but they did not respond by the time of publication. India has been busy planting trees, including non-native eucalyptus and acacia, to provide timber and fuel wood and in some cases to earn money from selling carbon credits under the Clean Development Mechanism established in 2001 as part of the Kyoto Protocol.

    The country now ranks second globally in terms of total land area under plantation. Laurance says that much of India’s claimed growth in forest cover has come from plantations, and that this is masking a fall in native forests. “The Indian government has made a big deal of increasing forest cover. But they are not distinguishing between natural and artificial forests,” he says.

    A growing problem

    This is bad for the environment because replanting native forests with non-native trees damages local biodiversity, says Neil Burgess, a conservation biologist at the University of Copenhagen. “Most plantations of non-native trees have very low biological value.

    They are only good to store carbon,” he says. This distinction between native and non-native trees is important for an accurate picture of the state of the world’s forests, says Laurance. In the analysis, the researchers assessed data on the growth in Indian plantations collected for the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations.

    It estimates that plantations grew by around 15,400 square kilometres a year between 1995 and 2005. The researchers subtracted the rates of plantation expansion from the growth in total forest cover as measured by remote-sensing imagery, and found that coverage of native Indian forests actually declined by 1.5 - 2.7 percent between 1995 and 2005 an “alarming” average of 2.4 percent a year and a loss of more than 124,000 square kilometres over the decade.

    The researchers checked these figures against changes in forest biovolume (the volume of wood and other above-ground forest material), estimated from field observations in the FSI report. They found a loss in native forest biovolume of around 2.7 percent per year.

    A resolution for change

    Laurance says that some assessments of forest cover, such as that carried out by the FAO, do not distinguish between native forests and plantations. They rely on relatively coarse data from sources including the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer satellites, which have a resolution of 1.1 square kilometres per pixel. But the Indian Remote Sensing satellites used by the FSI have a much higher resolution – up to 23.5 square meters per pixel – so the agency has the means to distinguish native forests from plantations of non-native trees.

    Laurance says he is hopeful that the United Nations’ REDD+ initiative to reduce carbon emissions from deforestation and forest degradation which includes a focus on conservation and sustainable management of forests will encourage India and other countries in similar situations to distinguish between native and artificial forests, and pay more attention to protecting the former. He says that countries such as Norway – the programme’s first and largest donor – will be interested more in paying to stop deforestation of native forests than in expanding plantations.

    Bhaskar Vira, an environmental economist at the University of Cambridge, UK, says that he thinks “there is probably some truth” in the study’s finding. But he warns that not all the trees planted each year reach maturity and show up in satellite imagery. Because the authors subtracted the FAO figures for the total area covered by plantations from a satellite-based estimate of total forest cover, the study may have overestimated the amount of deforestation taking place. Laurance agrees that the data on plantations is “rough,” but points out that the calculations of loss in biovolume used Forest Survey of India data. The figures derived were similar to his estimates for deforestation, so he is confident in the results.

    The source article can be found here: http://www.deccanherald.com/content/...e-forests.html

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •