While India and Bhutan has a forest cover of 33 percent and 60 percent, only five percent land in Pakistan is covered by forests
NEW DELHI, MARCH 10
Even as Pakistan has launched 10 billion trees project five years ago, the country has a one of the lowest forest cover in south Asia with only Afghanistan falling behind it. Only five percent land of the country is covered by the forests.
The Additional Chief Secretary of south Punjab Saqib Zafar has revealed this during a plantation drive aimed to increase the coverage of land under forests. “According to global standards, 25 percent of the area of any country should be covered by forests,” Zafar said. “But contrary to it, only 5 percent land of Pakistan is covered by forests”.
Zafar drew a comparison with Pakistan’s neighbours in south Asia. While India has a forest cover of 33 percent, 60 percent land of Himalayan Bhutan is covered by trees. In comparison, Pakistan and Afghanistan have a forest cover of only five and two percent’s respectively.
“Forests have a central position in the fight against climate change and for the survival of our future generation, it is necessary to plant forests on maximum area,” Zafar said. “Due to the global warming caused by deforestation, the entire mankind is facing serious threats and Pakistan is under the adverse effects of climate change”.
On September 3, 2018, Imran Khan after taking over as the Prime Minister of Pakistan had launched a five-year, country-wide tree plantation drive. The drive aimed at planting 10 billion trees in five years across Pakistan to combat global warming. The total project cost was estimated at 125.18 billion Pakistani rupees.
The billion tree program had been appreciated by United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). “We are at a point in history where we need to act and Pakistan is leading on this important effort,” the UNEP had said.