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Lahaul Spiti Seabuckthorn Association has alleged that the HP Forest Department has delayed the ambitious project of sea buckthorn cultivation on 2,500 hectares of forest area in Lahaul and Spiti.
A road map for cultivating 30,000 hectares of forestland with sea buckthorn in 10 years in Himachal, Uttarakhand, Ladakh, Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh was prepared in 2018 and the project was approved by the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change.
About Sea Buckthorn
It’s a shrub which produces an orange-yellow coloured edible berry. In India, it is found in dry areas such as the cold deserts of Ladakh and Spiti. In Himachal Pradesh, it is locally called chharma and grows in the wild in Lahaul and Spiti and parts of Kinnaur. Around 15,000 hectares in Himachal, Ladakh, Uttarakhand, Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh are covered by this plant.
It is a shrub native to China and areas of Europe. It contains many medicinal compounds, as well as nutrients that include Vitamins, Amino acids, Fatty acids, Minerals. It boosts immunity. The leaves, flowers, seeds, and berries of sea buckthorn are used in teas, oils, or concentrates for a wide variety of health issues. Besides being an important source of fuelwood and fodder, seabuckthorn is a soil-binding plant which prevents soil-erosion, checks siltation in rivers and helps preserve floral biodiversity. Seabuckthorn also has commercial value, as it is used in making juices, jams, nutritional capsules etc.
What is the Seabuckthorn project?
It is a project for the large scale seabuckthorn plantation on thousands of hectares of forest land under forestry programme of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). The seabuckthorn association wants the forest departments of various Himalayan states/UTs to plant seabuckthorn on arid and marginal lands using compensatory afforestation or CAMPA funds. The union ministry of environment, forest and climate change asked these states to submit proposals for taking up such plantations, “especially in the light of reduced water flow from Himalayan glaciers and its impact on ecology”.
By: Shahid Ali ProfileResourcesReport error
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