`star` Deforestation
`star` Slash and Burn Agriculture
`star` Consequences of Deforestation
`star` People’s participation in Conservation of Forests


● `color{brown}("Deforestation")` is the `color{violet}("conversion")` of forested areas to non-forested ones.

● According to an estimate, almost `color{brown}("40 % forests")` have been `color{violet}("lost")` in the `color{violet}("tropics,")` compared to only `color{violet}(1 %)` in the temperate region.

● The present scenario of `color{violet}("deforestation")` is particularly grim in India.

● At the beginning of the twentieth century, forests covered about `color{violet}("30 %)` of the land of India.

● By the end of the century, it shrunk to 19.4 per cent, whereas the`color{brown}(" National Forest Policy (1988)")` of India has recommended `color{violet}("33 %)` forest cover for the plains and `color{violet}(67 %)` for the hills.

● A number of human activities contribute to `color{violet}("deforestation.")`

● One of the major reasons is the `color{violet}("conversion of forest")` to agricultural land so as to feed the `color{violet}("growing human population")`.

● Trees are axed for `color{violet}("timber, firewood, cattle ranching")` and for several other purposes.


● `color{brown}("Slash and burn agriculture,")` commonly called as `color{brown}("Jhum cultivation ")`in the north-eastern states of India, has also contributed to `color{violet}("deforestation.")`

● In slash and `color{violet}("burn agriculture,"0` the farmers cut down the trees of the `color{violet}("forest and burn ")` the plant remains.

● The ash is used as a `color{violet}("fertiliser and the land")` is then used for farming or `color{violet}("cattle grazing.")`

● After `color{violet}("cultivation, the area")` is left for several years so as to allow its recovery.

● The farmers then move on to other areas and `color{violet}("repeat this process.")`

● In earlier days, when `color{violet}("Jhum cultivation")` was in prevalence, enough time-gap was given such that the `color{violet}("land recovered")` from the `color{violet}("effect of cultivation.")`

● With `color{violet}("increasing population")`, and `color{violet}("repeated cultivation,")` this recovery phase is done away with, resulting in


● There are many `color{violet}("consequences of deforestation.")`

● One of the major effects is `color{brown}("enhanced carbon dioxide concentration")` in the atmosphere because trees that could hold a lot of `color{violet}("carbon")` in their `color{violet}("biomass")` are lost with `color{violet}("deforestation.")`

● `color{violet}("Deforestation")` also causes loss of `color{violet}("biodiversity")` due to `color{violet}("habitat destruction, disturbs hydrologic cycle,")` causes soil erosion, and may lead to `color{violet}("desertification")` in extreme cases.

● `color{brown}("Reforestation")` is the process of restoring a `color{violet}("forest")` that once existed but was removed at some point of time in the past.

● `color{violet}("Reforestation")` may occur naturally in a `color{violet}("deforested area.")`

● However, we can speed it up by `color{violet}("planting trees")` with due `color{violet}("consideration")` to biodiversity that earlier existed
in that area.


● People’s participation has a long history in India.

`star` `color{green}("Efforts by Bishnoi Community :")`

● In 1731, the `color{violet}("king of Jodhpur in Rajasthan")` asked one of his ministers to arrange wood for constructing a new palace.

● The minister and workers went to a forest near a village, inhabited by Bishnois, to cut down trees.

● The `color{brown}("Bishnoi community")` is known for its `color{violet}("peaceful co-existence")` with nature.

● The effort to cut down trees by the kings was thwarted by `color{violet}("the Bishnois.")`

● A `color{brown}("Bishnoi woman Amrita Devi")` showed exemplary courage by hugging a tree and daring king’s men to cut her first before `color{violet}("cutting the tree.")`

● The `color{violet}("tree mattered")` much more to her than her own life.

● Sadly, the king’s men did not heed to `color{violet}("her pleas, and cut down the tree ")` along with `color{violet}("Amrita Devi")`.

● `color{violet}("Her three daughters and hundreds")` of other `color{violet}("Bishnois followed her,")` and thus lost their lives saving trees.

● Nowhere in history do we find a `color{violet}("commitment of this magnitude")` when human beings sacrificed their lives for the cause of the environment.

● The Government of India has recently instituted the `color{brown}("Amrita Devi Bishnoi Wildlife Protection Award ")`for individuals or communities from `color{violet}("rural areas")` that have shown extraordinary courage and `color{violet}("dedication ")`in protecting wildlife.

`star` `color{green}("Chipko Movement:")`

● You may have heard of the `color{brown}("Chipko Movement of Garhwal Himalayas.")`

● In 1974, local women showed enormous bravery in `color{violet}("protecting trees")` from the axe of contractors by `color{violet}("hugging them.")`

● People all over the world have acclaimed the `color{violet}("Chipko movement.")`

`star` `color{green}("JFM:")`

● Realising the `color{violet}("significance of participation")` by `color{violet}("local communities,")` the Government of India in 1980s has introduced the concept of `color{brown}("Joint Forest Management (JFM)")` so as to work closely with the `color{violet}("local communities for protecting")` and managing forests.

● In return for their services to the `color{violet}("forest, the communities")` get benefit of various `color{violet}("forest products")` (e.g., fruits, gum, rubber, medicine, etc.), and thus the forest can be `color{violet}("conserved in a sustainable")` manner.