Environmental pollution and exploitation of natural resources are catastrophes in the making. The recent water crisis issue in Chennai and the Assam Flood are befitting examples, where the former is parched, and the latter submerged. On the other hand, Delhi’s status as one of the most polluted cities in the world is well known. Hence, Delhi government has planned to develop 11 forests to keep the metropole’s air pollution in check. By Kumar Shree

Development, deforestation and devastation are interlinked, where the need of urban cover expansion shaves off the crucial green cover of the land. This attracts nature’s reaction like—soil erosion, increased air pollution, disturbed rain cycle, landslides and the abrupt change in climate patterns. It seems like restoration of the crucial green cover is only way out and that’s why the Delhi government is planning to develop 11 forests to keep the air pollution in check.

The proposal for developing these 11 forests came forth during a meeting between Delhi’s Environment and Forest Minister, Imran Hussain, and the principal chief conservator of forest, conservator of forest and deputy conservators of forests of various divisions. Hussain directed the development of six out of these 11 forests during the ongoing monsoon season itself. The government aims to complete the development of all these forests during the financial year 2019-20. Hussain has also sought proposals of mega tree-plantation drive in association with multiple greening agencies functioning in the Delhi-NCR region. The drive is expected to be executed in the last week of July 2019.

In a statement released earlier by the Delhi government, they declared that the aim to plant around 23 lakh trees and shrubs in the financial year 2019-20 . Though the number is less by around 10 lakhs from the previous year’s number, it is still a good number. The development of these forests will materialise in multiple phases, where phase one will witness the development of two forests in the Trans Yamuna area—near Shastri park colony and Garhi Mandu. Other forests to be developed in the later phases will come up near Shastri Park metro station in east Delhi, Mitraon in west Delhi, Aya Nagar in south Delhi, and ITO Chungi.

Related: Here’s Why Delhi Peeps Need To Enroll In An Environment Education Class ASAP!