According to the recently released India State of Forest Report (ISFR) 2015, India’s forest and tree cover has been increased by 5081 Square kilometre.
The report was released by the Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar in New Delhi
- The total forest and tree cover in the country is 79.42 million hectare, which accounts for 24.16 per cent of the total geographical area.
- The total forest cover of the country has increased by 3, 775 sq km and the tree cover has gone up by 1, 306 sq km.
- The majority of the increase in forest cover has been observed in open forest category mainly outside forest areas, followed by Very Dense Forest.
- Open Forest area: Increased by 4744 sq km and accounts for 9.14 per cent of the total geographical area.
- Very Dense Forest area: Increased by 2404 sq km and accounts for 2.61 per cent of the total geographical area.
- Total carbon stock: Increased by 1.48 per cent (103 million tonnes) and is estimated to be 7, 044 million tonnes in the country’s forest.
- Around 40 per cent forest cover in India is in 9 big patches of 10, 000 sq kms and more. The increase in mangrove cover also has been included in the increase in total forest cover.
- State wise maximum increase in forest cover: Tamil Nadu (2, 501 sq km), Kerala (1, 317 sq km) and Jammu & Kashmir (450 sq km).
- Largest forest cover in terms of area: Madhya Pradesh (77, 462 sq km), Arunachal Pradesh (67, 248 sq km) and Chhattisgarh (55, 586 sq km).
- Highest percentage of forest cover: Mizoram (88.93%), Lakshadweep (84.56%).
- States/UTs having forest cover above 33 per cent: 15 States/UTs have forest cover above 33 percent of the geographical area.
- Out of these 7 states/UTs have more than 75 per cent forest cover. They are Mizoram, Lakshadweep, Andaman & Nicobar Island, Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Meghalaya and Manipur.
- 8 states have forest cover in between 33 per cent to 75 per cent. They are Tripura, Goa, Sikkim, Kerala, Uttarakhand, Dadra & Nagar Haveli, Chhattisgarh and Assam.
The India State of Forest Report (ISFR) 2015 is the fourteenth report in the series. It is based on interpretation of LISS (Linear Imaging Self-Scanning Sensor) III data of indigenous remote sensing satellite, Resourcesat–II. The satellite data interpretation is based extensive and rigorous ground truthing.