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DAILY NEWS ANALYSIS

  • 15 January, 2022

  • 12 Min Read

India State of Forest Report 2021

India State of Forest Report 2021

Who prepares the India State of Forest Report, 2021?

  • India State of Forest Report 2021’ is prepared by the Forest Survey of India (FSI) which has been mandated to assess the forest and tree resources of the country.
  • The ISFR-2021 provides information on forest cover, tree cover, mangrove cover, growing stock, carbon stock in India’s forests, forest fire monitoring, forest cover in tiger reserve areas, above ground estimates of biomass using SAR data & climate change hotspots in Indian forests.

Features of India State of Forest Report, 2021

  • The total forest and tree cover of the country is 80.9 million hectares which are 24.62 per cent of the geographical area of the country. As compared to the assessment of 2019, there is an increase of 2,261 sq km in the total forest and tree cover of the country.
  • Out of this, the increase in the forest cover has been observed as 1,540 sq km and that in tree cover is 721 sq km.
  • Very Dense Forest:
  1. An increase in forest cover has been observed in the open forest followed by a very dense forest.
  2. The top three states showing an increase in forest cover are Andhra Pradesh (647 sq km) followed by Telangana (632 sq km) and Odisha (537 sq km).
  • Area-wise Madhya Pradesh has the largest forest cover in the country followed by Arunachal Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Odisha and Maharashtra.
  • In terms of forest cover as a percentage of total geographical area, the top five States are Mizoram (84.53%), Arunachal Pradesh (79.33%), and Meghalaya (76.00%), Manipur (74.34%) and Nagaland (73.90%).
  • 17 states/UT’s have above 33 % of the geographical area under forest cover. Out of these states and UT’s, five states/UTs namely Lakshadweep, Mizoram, Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Arunachal Pradesh and Meghalaya have more than 75 per cent forest cover while 12 states/UTs namely Manipur, Nagaland, Tripura, Goa, Kerala, Sikkim, Uttarakhand, Chhattisgarh, Dadra & Nagar Haveli and Daman & Diu, Assam, Odisha, have forest cover between 33 per cent to 75 per cent.
  • Mangrove cover: Total mangrove cover in the country is 4,992 sq km. An increase of 17 sq Km in mangrove cover has been observed as compared to the previous assessment of 2019. The top three states showing mangrove cover increase are Odisha (8 sq km) followed by Maharashtra (4 sq km) and Karnataka (3 sq km).
  • Total carbon stock in the country’s forests is estimated to be 7,204 million tonnes and there is an increase of 79.4 million tonnes in the carbon stock of the country as compared to the last assessment of 2019. The annual increase in carbon stock is 39.7 million tonnes.

New Features of India State of Forest Report, 2021

New chapter on Tiger Reserves, Corridors and Lion Conservation Area

  • In the present ISFR 2021, FSI has included a new chapter related to the assessment of forest cover in the Tiger Reserves, Corridors and Lion conservation area of India.
  • In this context, the decadal assessment of change in forest cover within Tiger Reserves, Corridors and Lion conservation area helps in assessing the impact of conservation measures and management interventions that have been implemented over the years.
  • For decadal assessment, change in forest cover, during the period between ISFR 2011 (data period 2008 to 2009) and the current cycle (ISFR 2021, data period 2019-2020) within each Tiger Reserves has been analysed.

Above Ground Biomass (AGB)

  • A new initiative of FSI has also been documented in the form of a chapter, where the ‘Above Ground Biomass’ has been estimated.
  • FSI, in collaboration with Space Application Centre (SAC), ISRO, Ahmedabad, initiated a special study for estimation of Above Ground Biomass (AGB) at pan-India level, using L- band of Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) data.
  • The results for the States of Assam and Odisha (as well as AGB maps), were presented earlier in ISFR 2019.
  • The interim results for AGB estimates (and AGB maps) for the entire country are being presented as a new chapter in ISFR 2021. The detailed report will be published after the completion of the study.

Mapping of Climate Change Hotspots in Indian Forests

  • FSI in collaboration of with Birla Institute of Technology & Science (BITS) Pilani, Goa Campus has performed a study based on ‘Mapping of Climate Change Hotspots in Indian Forests’.
  • The collaborative study was carried out with the objective to map the climatic hotspots over the forest cover in India, using computer model-based projection of temperature and rainfall data, for the three future time periods i.e. years 2030, 2050 and 2085.
  • The report also contains information on various parameters State/UT wise.

Special Thematic Maps on Forest Cover

  • Special thematic information on forest covers such as a hill, tribal districts, and northeastern region has also been given separately in the report.
  • It is expected that the information given in the report would provide valuable information for policy, planning and sustainable management of forest and tree resources in the country.

Methodology to measure India State of Forest Report, 2021

  • In tune with the Government of India’s vision of digital India and the need for integration of digital data sets, FSI has adopted using the vector boundary layers of various administrative units up to the districts level as provided by the Survey of India along with digital open series topo sheets, in order to ensure comprehensive compatibility with the geographical areas as reported in Census, 2011.
  • The biennial assessment of forest cover of the country using mid-resolution Satellite data is based on the interpretation of LISS-III data from Indian Remote Sensing satellite data (Resources at-II) with a spatial resolution of 23.5 meters with a scale of interpretation 1:50,000 to monitor forest cover and forest cover changes at District, State and National level.
  • This information provides inputs for various global level inventories, reports such as GHG Inventory, Growing Stock, Carbon Stock, Forest Reference Level (FRL) and international reporting to UNFCCC targets under CBD Global Forest Resource Assessment (GFRA) for planning and scientific management of forests.
  • Satellite data for the entire country was procured from NRSC for the period October to December 2019. The satellite data interpretation is followed by rigorous ground-truthing. Information from other collateral sources is also used to improve the accuracy of the interpreted image.

Click here to read the India State of Forest Report, 2019

Source: PIB


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