Nagaland’s Environment, Forest and Climate Change Minister, CM Chang, revealed that Nagaland is losing its forest cover at an alarming rate of 200 square km per year. This was revealed by the Minister while addressing a ‘Sensitization Programme of District Management Unit, Field Management Unit and first batch of villages under Nagaland Forest Management Project (NFMP)’ at the forest office complex in Dimapur.
Focusing on the objectives of NFMP, Chang said the project aimed at conserving land under shifting cultivation by a three-pronged approach – forest interventions and biodiversity conservation through community participation, livelihood improvement and community development and institutional strengthening. He also shared that all these measures would contribute towards environmental conservation and generate a stable income for villages targeted under the project.
He revealed that the project would target 185 villages across 11 districts spread over 22 ranges. The villages would be selected in four batches. The first batch consisting of representative from 33 villages were present at the programme. According to Chang, the project, which began from 2017, would be of 10-year duration and will create both direct and indirect employment.
The Minister also informed that Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) had signed an agreement with the Central Government last year to provide ‘official development assistance’ loans to eight projects in India.