First-ever monitoring system against forest mafia, illegal logging, land use launched

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Zubair Qureshi

Prime Minister’s Special Assistant on Climate Change, Malik Amin Aslam has said that monitoring of forests resources is pivotal for containing deforestation and forest land degradation and taming global warming-caused climate change.

He made these remarks while addressing “launching ceremony of the National Forest Monitoring System (NFMS)” which helps detect logging operations in forest areas and natural habitats of outstanding significance or critical importance, in a matter of minutes.
There has been large-scale deforestation and land degradation in the country over last several years for want of effective forest monitoring system, said Malik Amin Aslam.
“However, he said the forest monitoring system would prove a great help for the country regarding conservation, sustainable management of forests, enhancement of forest carbon stocks and monitor changes in the forest land use and detect deforestation land degradation activities,” he highlighted.

Quoting figures, PM’s aide Malik Amin Aslam said that Pakistan loses forests over 27,000 hectares annually, which has led to massive environmental degradation and contamination of air quality, causing various serious public health hazards.
The event was organised by the Ministry of Climate Change in support with the World Bank-supported US$ 7.81 million dollar Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+) Readiness Project.

The United Nations Programme on Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (or UN-REDD+ Programme) is a collaborative programme of the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), created in 2008 in response to the UNFCCC decisions on the Bali Action Plan and REDD at the United Nations’ 13th Session on Climate Change.

The REDD+ is an only concept, which was adopted by the countries under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in 2010 for mitigation of climate change in the forestry sector.

He told the participants that while the heightened importance has been assigned by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf-led incumbent government to boosting forest cover and taming deforestation and land degradation in the country, a first-ever national forest monitoring system launched here today as a part of the prime minister Imran Khan’s vision for clean and green Pakistan to check unlawful deforestation and forest land degradation activities across the country for environmental sustainability and national climate action.
Spelling out goals of the development of a robust national forest monitoring system, Malik Amin Aslam told the participants that it’s overarching goal is establishment of a reliable forest resource information system for application in creating national forest policies, planning and sustainable development.