1% increase in forest cover
Since the adoption of Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the government took measures to enhance forests cover from 5% to 6% including approval of forestry mega projects at the cost of Rs12 billion, said Muhammad Javed Malik, Federal Secretary, Ministry of National Disaster Management.
He said this while inaugurating a workshop on “REDD + Safeguards” organized by the Ministry of National Disaster Management. Pakistan joined UN REDD as a partner in 2011, and is set to operational and mainstream REDD+ in its forest management practices. This is aimed to bring benefits of REDD+ to curb deforestation, enhance tree cover, realize multiple benefits, generate employment to the forest dwelling and dependent communities without compromising on environmental and social integrity.
He mentioned that REDD+ is indeed an important financing mechanism bringing more opportunities for developing countries like Pakistan to conserve natural forests to control greenhouse gasses’ emission.
Muhammad Javed Malik appreciated the efforts of workshop organisers especially the IG Forests in taking all stakeholders on board and assured his commitment on behalf of the government to follow all those recommendations whatever the participants would calibrate during the proceeding.
Syed Nasir Mehmood, Inspector General of Forests, said that while developing a national programme on REDD+ they have to take into account the social and environmental safeguards, especially in the context of biodiversity conservation in Pakistan. Earlier, Dr Amjad Tahir Virk, National Project Coordinator, Sustainable Land Management Programme, while welcoming the participants highlighted that how land degradation and desertification is linked with climate change and REED + initiative.