New Delhi: Union Minister of Environment, Forests and Climate Change Prakash Javadekar on Wednesday asked forest and wildlife officers to focus on innovation and initiative to maintain and improve the quality of forests in the country.
Addressing the inaugural session of a two-day conference of principal chief conservators of forests and wildlife wardens here, Javadekar said maintaining and improving the quality of forests is a major challenge.
"We must ensure that degraded forests are converted into moderately dense forests in 10 years and moderately dense forests are converted into dense forests in five years," he said.
Javadekar also signed an agreement to establish the world's first centre of natural heritage and training at the Wildlife Institute of India here.
"Forest research institutes must draw up a distinct plan of improving the quality of each forest, taking the existing flora and climate into consideration," he added.
The minister laid emphasis on ensuring people's participation in changing the quality of forests.
The two-day conference will discuss issues like the forest conservation act, eco-sensitive zones and minimising human-wildlife conflict.