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How far do you think privatizing multi-use forest areas is a viable option to ensure contributions to commitments made to mitigate climate change? Critically examine in the backdrop of recently proposed Green Credit Scheme .

Topic:  Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment

7. How far do you think privatizing multi-use forest areas is a viable option to ensure contributions to commitments made to mitigate climate change? Critically examine in the backdrop of recently proposed Green Credit Scheme .(250 words)

The Hindu

Why this question:

The Forest Advisory Committee, an apex body tasked with adjudicating requests by the industry to raze forest land for commercial ends, has approved a scheme that could allow “forests” to be traded as a commodity. If implemented, it allows the Forest Department to outsource one of its responsibilities of reforesting to non-government agencies. Thus the question.

Key demand of the question:

Discuss in detail the pros and cons of privatizing multi-use forest areas in the country. Also highlight the opportunities and obstacles pointed out by the Green Credit Scheme.

Directive:

Critically examine – When asked to ‘Examine’, we have to look into the topic (content words) in detail, inspect it, investigate it and establish the key facts and issues related to the topic in question. While doing so we should explain why these facts and issues are important and their implications. When ‘critically’ is suffixed or prefixed to a directive, one needs to look at the good and bad of the topic and give a fair judgment.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

First discuss basic statistics of the forest area available in the country and the quantum of area required by the Industries.

Body:

Discuss that the Green credit scheme allows “forests” to be traded as a commodity. It allows the Forest Department to outsource one of its responsibilities of reforesting to non-government agencies.

Then move onto present the advantages and disadvantages of such a move.

Explain that such a scheme will encourage plantation by individuals outside the traditional forest area and will help in meeting international commitments such as sustainable development goals and nationally determined contributions.

Also explain that Forests are treated as a mere commodity without any social or ecological character and that could pose a major challenge in meeting the goals of the policy.

Conclusion:

Conclude that a balanced approach is the need of the hour.

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