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23 December, 2018 03:08:19 PM / LAST MODIFIED: 23 December, 2018 03:43:38 PM
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Bangladesh’s tree coverage to be 24pc by 2022

Independent Online Desk
Bangladesh’s tree coverage to be 24pc by 2022

The country’s total tree coverage will increase to around 24 percent by 2022 from the existing 22 percent as the government is implementing different programmes to achieve the goal, a top government official said.

“We’ve taken all sorts of steps to expand the total forest land under an initiative titled ‘Paribesh Surokkha’, one of the ten priority initiatives of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina,” Additional Secretary of the Environment, Forest and Climate Change Ministry Dr Nurul Quadir told BSS.

He added: “The programme aims to ensure a liveable environment for the present and the next generations through using a suitable and time befitting technology.”

Dr Quadir said, the government is working on ensuring sustainable environment through conservation of ecology and biodiversity, control of environmental pollution and resilience against the negative climate change impact.

He said, the government is also promoting zero discharge of industrial effluents and working on raising awareness to combat adverse effect of climate change and protecting 15 percent of wet land in dry season as aquatic sanctuary.

Dr Quadir said, the government has also taken initiatives to improve air quality by reducing air pollution in Dhaka and other large cities.

In 2009-10 fiscal, he said, the government formed the ‘Climate Change Trust Fund’ and allocated Taka 3500 crore till 2018-19 financial year.

“With the assistance of Climate Change Trust Fund, cyclone resilient houses have been constructed in cyclone ‘Ayla’-affected coastal areas,” he said.

Dr Quadir said, re-excavation of 872.19 kilometer canal all over the country, protection of 352.12 kilometer river embankment and construction of 161.23 kilometer coastal embankment have also been finished with this fund.

Besides, he said, sinking of 4,148 deep tube-wells and setting up of 1,050 rain water reservoirs and 17,145 solar home systems in off-grid areas have been completed.

Dr Quadir said Effluent Treatment Plants (ETPs) have so far been set up in 1,711 industries to treat wastewater.

To protect environment, he said, the government has enacted Bangladesh Environment Protection (Amendment) Act-2010, Environment Court Act-2010, Climate Change Trust Act-2010 and Bangladesh Biodiversity Rules-2012.

In the 73rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) meeting, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said initiatives have been taken to increase forest coverage to 24 percent from 22 percent in the next five years.

Deputy Conservator of Forests and National Coordinator of the Bangladesh Forest Inventory M Zaheer Iqbal said, Maryland University of the USA and Bangladesh Forest Department jointly conducted a satellite-based comprehensive national tree cover change assessment in Bangladesh from 2000 to 2014.

As per the assessment, he said, the tree cover area (including industrial and small-scale tree plantations, village woodlots, and homestead trees) within the country is increasing as the government is implementing different programmes in this regard.

Iqbal said since the 1980s, a number of government programmes, as well as campaigns organized by non-government organisations, are focused on the establishment and sustainable management of trees outside of forests.

“The programmes include support for agro forestry systems, expansion of village woodlots and planting trees on degraded lands, near houses and along the roads,” he added.BSS.

KK

 

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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