Forests are habitat to all wild animals, plants and support millions of species. They help in reducing global warming caused by green house gases and produces oxygen upon photosynthesis.
Forest can act as pollution purifier by absorbing toxic gases. Forest not only helps in soil conservation but also helps to regulate the hydrological cycle.
Forests contribute substantially to the national economy. With increasing population increased demand of fuel wood, expansion of area under urban development and industries has lead to over exploitation of forest.
At present international level we are losing forest at the rate of 1.7 crore hectares annually. Overexploitation also occurs due to overgrazing and conversion of forest to pastures for domestic use.
Forest is one of the most valuable resources and thus needs to be conserved. To conserve forest, following steps should be taken.
- Conservation of forest is a national problem, thus it should be tackled with perfect coordination between concerned government departments.
- People should be made aware of importance of forest and involved in forest conservation activities.
- The cutting of trees in the forests for timber should be stopped.
- A forestation programmes should be launched
- Grasslands should be regenerated.
- Forest conservation Act should be strictly implemented to check deforestation.
- Awards should be instituted for the deserving.
Forest is important renewable resources. Forest vary in composition and diversity and can contribute substantially to the economic development of any country.
Plants along with trees cover large areas, produce variety of products and provide food for living organisms, and also important to save the environment.
It is estimated that about 30% of world area is covered by forest whereas 26% by pastures. Among all continents, Africa has largest forested area (33%) followed by Latin America (25%), whereas in North America forest cover is only 11%. Asia and former USSR has 14% area under forest.
European countries have only 3% area under forest cover. India’s Forest Cover accounts for 20.6% of the total geographical area of the country as of 2005.