Finding Balance in India’s Forest
Forests supply high quality logs while continuing to provide a sanctuary for wildlife and the culture of Indigenous Peoples.
Plant, animal, and human lives co-exist in profusion and harmony in the densely wooded tracts of Uttar Pradesh (UP) in northern India. There are many human activities here – wildlife sanctuaries, logging operations and tribal villages, but they are strictly monitored to preserve the ecological balance of the area through a unique partnership between the UP Forest Department and UP Forest Corporation (UPFC).
The northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh is covered by rich forests, totalling 21,720 square kilometres – just over nine per cent of the state’s geographical area.
These forests are highly diverse and include:
- high quality timber-yielding trees like teak and sal,
- along with fruit and
- indigenous medicinal plants used in Ayurveda therapy.
UPFC earned FSC forest management certification in 2015, covering almost 404,104 hectares. FSC certification has enabled the UP government to make plans to boost its revenue from forest products, while ensuring that the forests remain healthy and vibrant.
“While the value of timber from UP was already well known, the UP government sought FSC certification to compete in international markets. Timber from UP is world famous for its quality and strength – while a teak tree has to be at least 65 years old before it can be cut, furniture made from teak can last even longer. We are gearing up to market FSC-certified wood and earn better revenues – indeed, 20 buyers have already registered to purchase FSC-certified timber.” notes P. Brahmanandan, Divisional Manager for UPFC.