- The Forest Advisory Committee, an apex body tasked with adjudicating requests by the industry to raze forest land for commercial ends, has approved a scheme that could allow “forests” to be traded as a commodity.
- It allows the Forest Department to outsource one of its responsibilities of reforesting to non-government agencies.
- In the current system, industry needs to make good the loss of forest by finding appropriate non-forest land — equal to that which would be razed.
- It also must pay the State Forest Department the current economic equivalent — called Net Present Value — of the forest land. It’s then the Forest Department’s responsibility to grow appropriate vegetation that, over.
- The proposed ‘Green Credit Scheme’, as it is called, allows agencies — they could be private companies, village forest communities — to identify land and begin growing plantations.
- After three years, they would be eligible to be considered as compensatory forest land if they met the Forest Department’s criteria.
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