K`taka bans plantation of eucalyptus and acacia on forest land

The Government had on February 4 banned eucalyptus cultivation in Malnad and Semi-Malnad areas and it has prohibited cultivation of eucalyptus and acacia also.

Updated: Mar 21, 2011, 21:14 PM IST

Bangalore: Karnataka government on Monday banned
plantation of Eucalyptus and Acacia on forest land in a bid to
discourage monoculture forests due to the ecological damages
these species caused, the State`s Minister for Forest C H
Vijayashankar said.

The government has issued a circular that eucalyptus and
acacia plantations cannot be taken up on forest lands as they
cause water table depletion and erode soil fertility, he told
reporters.

The Government had on February 4 banned eucalyptus
cultivation in Malnad and Semi-Malnad areas and it has
prohibited cultivation of eucalyptus and acacia also.

Following the ban, the Forest Department, which had a
practice of raising eucalyptus and acacia as separate
plantations, will have to abandon it.

The government has already set out guidelines for raising
eucalyptus planation in dry zones.

Vijayashankar said the government would soon identify the
species of plants that would be encouraged for plantation
by farmers under the subsidy scheme.

In the 2011-12 budget the government has said it would
offer Rs five subsidy for every sapling planted by farmers in
the first year, Rs ten in the second year and Rs 20 during the
third year to encourage afforestation.

Vijayashankar said the government has also banned use of
lands owned by Forest Development Corporation for growing pulp
and eucalyptus for industrial use.

He said during the Forest Ministers conference to be held
in Delhi on March 28, he would appeal to the Centre to follow
Karnataka`s model on monoculture forests by banning eucalyptus
and acacia species plantation.

PTI