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fsi: Forest cover estimate based on field data: Forest Survey of India | India News


NEW DELHI: Amid criticism from experts about the method for mapping forest cover in the country, Forest Survey of India (FSI) indicates the estimated forest cover from field survey data, supporting the data obtained from satellite-based interpretation.
It claims that criticism of their findings is based on perception and does more to create sensation.
Sticking to my assessment, which shows how both forest and tree cover has increased in India over the past two years, bringing total green coverage to almost a quarter of the country’s geographic area ( GA) in 2021, the FSI on Wednesday explained in detail how it has conducted the biennial survey, based on globally accepted standards, supported by a building exercise elaborate basic construction. Environment Minister Bhupender Yadav last week released the FSI’s State of the Forests Report of India (ISFR), in 2021′, showing that ‘forests’ and ‘trees outside of recorded forest areas’, combined, reported an increase of 2,261 square kilometers (0.3%) last year compared to the assessment previous rates in 2019. This increase has taken away the overall green cover to 8,09,537 square kilometers (24.6% GA) which includes 7,13,789 square kilometers of forest cover (21.7%) GA).
However, critics have questioned the FSI’s claims with one of them, MD Madhusudan, ecologist and co-founder of the Nature Conservancy. native grasses are being overrun by invasive plants and even treeless deserts”.
In his social media post, he said, “There is little evidence that India’s natural forest cover has actually increased. In fact, it most likely has dropped. Calling such comments “practically inaccurate,” FSI said it has conducted an inventory of forests and out-of-forest trees at full sampling points across the country.
“Forest cover was also estimated from the field survey data, corroborating the forest cover data obtained from satellite-based interpretation. The variable polygon is verified by the FSI as well as by the state governments, after which only the interpretation is accepted,” it said. The FSI emphasizes that it does “mapping the country’s forest cover,” using a remote sensing-based methodology over a two-year period, and notes that the points the critics make are “ their perception”.
In view of critics’ view of tea plantations and coconut plantations as forests, the FSI flagged the definition of “forest cover”, which is used in ISFR, where it is defined as “all land, more than one hectare in area, with tree canopy density above 10% regardless of ownership or legal status Such lands may not necessarily be a recorded forest area. including orchards, bamboo, palm trees, etc.”
“Tea areas that meet the above conditions and are captured by satellite sensors are considered forest cover, mainly because of the tree cover that exists there,” FSI said. Depending on canopy density, they are classified as “light forest”, “moderately dense forest” and “very dense forest”. ”

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