No more distribution of saplings as part of Environment Day | Kochi News


Kochi: There will be no more free distribution of saplings on Environment Day and throughout June in Kerala. The forestry department plans to stop the free distribution of saplings given the lack of funds and wastage of saplings after people or institutions collect on a large scale.
The department also plans to put a cap of 50,000 saplings to be distributed through social forestry during the period. Social Forestry will set up nurseries in every block of the state to meet local demand for saplings. Local organizations falling within the block boundary will have to raise the saplings with the support of NREGS workers. Social forestry distributed young trees, raised in its nurseries, directly to local organizations and institutions during Environment Day and throughout June.
“We distributed 48 lakh of saplings in June of this year. Social forestry has planted over nine young lakh trees. The rest of the saplings are distributed by local organizations. We plan to stop the free distribution of saplings because people are not serious about planting and caring for them. Local agencies can raise plants according to their needs and local species in nurseries in each block. We make them plant the saplings and take care of them, ”said Pradeep Kumar, APCCF (Social Forestry) in the forestry department.
AK Saseendran and MV Govindan, ministers of forests and departments of local self-government, respectively, will have a discussion on the involvement of local bodies in the cultivation of seedlings. Social forestry, panchayat and NREGS officials will hold meetings to discuss how many saplings each local organization needs and what kind of plant species should be grown in the area.
The 50,000 saplings from each district will be used in various projects undertaken by social forestry.
“The local organizations that collect the saplings from us don’t know what to do with them. We plan to rationalize it by having them planted and raised according to local needs. By hiring NREGS workers, many will also gain employment, ”Kumar said.


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