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India’s coal sector PSUs transform 50,000 hectares of barren land into green forests

India’s coal sector PSUs transform 50,000 hectares of barren land into green forests

New Delhi, June 4 (SocialNews.XYZ) India’s coal and lignite Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) have succeeded in transforming approximately 50,000 hectares of barren land in and around coal mining regions into green forests that have the potential to absorb 2.5 million tonnes of carbon dioxide a year, according to a report released by the Coal Ministry on Tuesday.

The report released to mark World Environment Day on June 5, states that the achievement “includes biological reclamation of de-coaled land covering around 29,592 hectares (Ha), additional plantation efforts like avenue plantation within mine leaseholds accounting for roughly 12,673 Ha and plantation activities outside mine leaseholds covering about 7,735 Ha.


The initiative is expected to further contribute to the augmentation of India's green cover, thereby aiding in the fulfilment of India's Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) target of achieving a carbon absorption capacity of 2.5 to 3.0 billion tonnes by the year 2030.

As the year marks the 30th anniversary of the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), focus of World Environment Day, 2024 is on land restoration, desertification and drought resilience, under the slogan “Our Land. Our Future. We are #GenerationRestoration”. The theme emphasises the importance of sustainable land management and the need to rehabilitate degraded lands to ensure a sustainable future for all.

The Coal Ministry report highlights that the public sector undertakings have undertaken extensive afforestation and ecological restoration projects, transforming barren landscapes into thriving green areas. Such initiatives not only combat desertification and enhance drought resilience but also contribute to carbon sequestration and biodiversity conservation.

Secretary, Ministry of Coal, Amrit Lal Meena said the report would garner significant attention and be leveraged to augment green cover through the adoption of innovative techniques, such as seed ball plantation, seed casting via drones and Miyawaki plantation, within coal mines by other entities. It aims to outline the initiatives undertaken by the coal sector to increase green cover in coal regions through reclamation efforts.

The report emphasises the consistent endeavours made by Coal/Lignite PSUs to mitigate the environmental impact of coal mining through ongoing reclamation and afforestation efforts. The report presents greening initiatives carried out in both closed and active coal mines, alongside a blueprint for a more sustainable and eco-friendly future.

The data provided has undergone validation through Remote Sensing Studies and on-site ground-truthing surveys at selected locations. This report stands as the initial comprehensive documentation of baseline data regarding greening efforts by Coal/Lignite PSUs, setting a standard for forthcoming scientific investigations.

Additionally, a roadmap has been outlined for future plantation initiatives planned until the fiscal year 2029-2030, taking into consideration the necessary advancements in effective land reclamation and the sustainable utilisation of mining-degraded lands.

Coal/Lignite PSUs are implementing scientific reclamation techniques for mined-out lands according to technical and biological schedules outlined in mining plans. Additionally, they are pioneering community-oriented land uses such as restored forests, eco-parks, eco-tourism sites.

Source: IANS

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India’s coal sector PSUs transform 50,000 hectares of barren land into green forests

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