Government plans forestation to rejuvenate rivers
The Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change has already released the Detail Project Reports (DPRs) for carrying out the programmes of forestry intervention for the rejuvenation of rivers.
Published: 11th December 2022 07:43 AM | Last Updated: 11th December 2022 07:43 AM | A+A A-
NEW DELHI: The Central government has decided to start a mega project of forestry interventions for the rejuvenation of 13 rivers through mass tree plantations along rivers’ treatment areas and organising other forestry activities.
The Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change has already released the Detail Project Reports (DPRs) for carrying out the programmes of forestry intervention for the rejuvenation of rivers. The DPRs said deforestation and forest degradation, scanty rainfall, flash floods, landslides, bank erosion, faulty agriculture and horticulture practices, soil erosion, excessive groundwater extraction, rapid urbanisation, unregulated floodplain, waste dumping, the release of effluents, unregulated tourism, pilgrimage, unregulated sand mining, and riverbank encroachment are some of the issues that are impacting the rivers in the country.
Sharing this information in reply to a question in the Lok Sabha on Friday, Ashwini Kumar Choubey, the Minister of State in the for Environment, Forest and Climate Change, said that the DPRs of this mega reviver rejuvenation project have been prepared by Indian Council of Forestry, Research and Education (ICFRE) Deharadun.
The rivers selected for forestry intervention for their rejuvenation are Jhelum, Chenab, Ravi, Beas, Sutlej, Yamuna, Brahmaputra, Luni, Narmada, Godavari, Mahanadi, Krishna and Cauvery. According to minister, the programme interventions for the rejuvenation of selected 13 rivers include mass tree plantation, soil and moisture conservation works in the catchment area river front development to increase green cover and carbon sink.
The minister also said that works for reducing silt load and flooding and enhancing ground water recharges are also being included with the action plan of the river rejuvenation. “ The total financial requirement to the interventions proposed in the DPRs for 13 river rejuvenation is Rs 19,342.62 crore under four major components,” he added.
The four major components are implementation of Forestry Intervention, Strengthening Knowledge Management and National capacity development, maintenance phase, including scaling up and replication of successful models and the national coordination for Forestry Intervention and River Conservation. He said that the DPRs have been shared with concerned states through which the selected 13 rivers are passing through.
Plantation scheme for 13 rivers
- The government of India has recently released a river rejuvenation programme worth `193 billion through a massive focus on plantation activities.
- The 13 major rivers in the plan belong to the Himalayan region as well as peninsular India and they collectively cover a total basin area of about 1.89 million square kilometres which is about 57 percent area of India’s total geographical area.
- The plan, however, is criticised by experts who note that it is nothing but old wine in a new bottle focusing on plantations without understanding and addressing the real issues behind the degradation of the rivers.