Role and Organisation
The Ministry of Environment & Forests, is the nodal agency in the administrative structure of the Central Government for planning, promotion, coordination and overseeing the implementation of the various environmental and forestry programmes. The Ministry is also the nodal agency in the country for the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) and looks after the follow-up of the United Nations’ Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED).
The broad objectives of the Ministry are:
Conservation and Survey of flora, fauna, forests and wildlife,
Prevention and control of pollution,
Afforestation and regeneration of degraded areas and
Protection of environment.
These objectives are sought to be fulfilled by the Ministry through:
environmental impact assessment,
assistance to organisations implementing environmental and forestry programmes,
promotion of environmental and forestry research, extension, education and training,
dissemination of environmental information,
international cooperation, and
creation of environmental awareness among all sectors of the country’s population.
These objectives are well supported by a set of legislative and regulatory measures, aiming at the preservation, conservation and protection of the environment. Some of them are the Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981, the Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974, the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986, the Public Liability Insurance Act, 1991, the National Environment Tribunal Act, 1995, the National Environment Appellate Authority Act, 1997, Wildlife Protection act, 1972 and Forests (Conservation) Act, 1980. Besides the legislative measures, a National Conservation Strategy and Policy Statement on Environment and Development, 1992, National Forest Policy, 1988 and a Policy Statement on Abatement of Pollution, 1992 have also been evolved.
The organizational structure of the Ministry indicating various divisions, associated and autonomous offices/agencies is given in Annexure-1.
Allocation of Business
Environment and Ecology, including environment in coastal waters, in mangroves and coral reefs but excluding marine environment on the high seas.
Botanical Survey of India and Botanical Gardens.
Zoological Survey of India.
National Museum of Natural History
The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Cess Act, 1977.
The Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act,, 1981.
The Indian Forest Act, 1927
The National Environment Tribunal Act, 1995
The Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972
The Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980
The Environment (Protection) Act, 1986
The Public Liability Insurance Act, 1991
Biosphere Reserve Programme
National Forest Policy and Forestry Development in the country, including social forestry.
Forest Policy and all matters relating to forests and forest administration in so far as the Andaman and Nicobar Islands are concerned.
Indian Forest Services
Wildlife preservation and protection of wild birds and animals
Central Zoo Authority
Fundamental research, including coordination thereof and higher education in forestry.
Padmaja Naidu Himalayan Zoological Park
National Assistance to Forestry Development Schemes
Central Ganga Authority
The National Environment Appellate Authority Act, 1997
Indian Plywood Industries Research and Training Institute, Bangalore
Forest Survey of India, Dehradun
National Afforestation and Eco-development Board.
Desert and Desertification.
An overview of the activities undertaken during the year by the Ministry and its associated offices/agencies, is as follows:
Survey of natural resources
Three hundred and sixtyfive species were collected for ex-situ multiplication of rare, endangered, wild relatives of ornamentals, medicinally important plants in different gardens of Botanical Survey of India (BSI) and 213 species have been multiplied.
Ten Species have been described for the first time and all are new to the world. Thirty two species have been recorded from India for the first time and four species re-discovered after a lapse of 50 to 150 years.
More than 74 exploration/collection tours were undertaken by various circle offices and units of Botanical Survey of India (BSI) in different Districts of different States, in protected areas and fragile ecosystems including wetlands of Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Goa, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Orissa, Rajasthan, Sikkim, Uttaranchal, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal. More than 11,505 specimens were collected including lower groups of plants, namely, algae, fungi, lichens, bryophytes and pteridophytes and 6205 specimens were identified.
One thousand three hundred twenty species under 78 families of flora of Karnataka, 220 species of poaceae of flora of Nagaland, 72 species under the families myrsinaceae, sapotaceae, ebenaceae, symplocaceae of flora of Assam, 151 species of the families, cucurbitaceae, chenopodiaceae, boraginaceae, amarnthaceae of the flora of West Bengal were completed.
Chromosome numbers of 14 species along with two species of Acanthaceae were determined. Documentation of Chromosome Number Reports of Indian species, after 1981 were also completed for the families from celastraceae to fabaceae, balsaminaceae, dipterocarpaceae and burseraceae.
Pollen Morphological Studies of 44 species under the families genitanaceae (27 spp) and thalypteridaceae (17 spp) were completed under Light Microscope for Pollen Atlas of India Plant
Plant parts of 41 species were collected and 16 species extracted in different solvents and screened for active phyto constituents.
Flora of several states and a number of bulletins of the Botanical Survey of India were published.
Seventy seven extensive faunal surveys were undertaken in different States/UTs including important eco-systems and some selected conservation/protected areas. In addition, several short-duration intensive surveys for ecological and bio-monitoring studies were also undertaken.
The national zoological collections were further enriched by the addition of 17,614 specimens belonging to 1,659 species including 40 species new to science.
Detailed taxonomic studies carried out during the year, resulted in the discovery of a total of 40 species and one genus.
Eighteen examples belonging to four species of coleptera and two vials containing two species of isoptera, 49 examples belonging to 23 species of lepidoptera in the Ranthambore National Park were studied and identified. Two examples belonging to one species of Mollusca and 42 examples under 13 species of crustacea were studied and classified in the Tadoba National Park, Maharashtra.
One hundred and eleven examples belonging to 28 species of hemiptera were identified in the Agastamalai Tamil Madu Tiger Reserve and the studies on this group were concluded.
Seven examples pertaining to three species of arachnida and 76 examples belonging to eight species of pisces were studied and identified in Biligiri Rangaswamy Wildlife Sanctuary, Karnataka.
Studies were also conducted in the tropical rain forests of Western Ghats, Nal Sarovar Fresh Water Eco-system, Gujarat, Keoladeo Ghana Freshwater Ecosystem, Rajasthan, Suvernarekha River Ecosystem, Jharkhand and Wetlands of Shivalik Region, Uttaranchal and various species were collected and identified.
The Fauna of India Volumes for Coleoptera-Scolytidae, Part-I and Dermatera, Part-II were finalized for publication.
The database on national zoological collections encompassing all groups (protozoa to mammalia) was developed in the ZSI headquarters and during the year several entries on lepidoptera, odonata and coleoptera, were made in the database.
During the year, interpretation of 182 sheets pertaining to Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Haryana, Punjab, Orissa, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, Sikkim, A&N Islands and North-Eastern States was completed for forest cover assessment by Forest Survey of India.
The Forest Survey of India published Forest Inventory Reports of various districts pertaining to the States of Madhya Pradesh, Orissa, A&N Islands, Sikkim, Tamil Nadu, Jharkhand, Bihar and West Bengal and the UT of Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
Survey of plantation outside conventional forests has been initiated by the FSI to assess the impact of social forestry and other forestry extension programmes in meeting fuel-wood and timber needs of the people as well as raw material requirements of wood-based industries. During the year, Inventory of Trees Outside Forests Reports in respect of Haryana, rural areas of Karnataka State, Sambhalpur, Balasore and Mayurbhanj of Orissa State, Mathura, Farukabad of Uttar Pradesh, Midnapore of West Bengal State and Betul District of Madhya Pradesh were published.
The Eighth Report of the assessment of forest cover in the country is being finalized by the Forests Survey of India. A website with the URL: http://www.fsiorg.net was launched during the year by the FSI in order to provide information on the Country’s forest resources.
Conservation of Natural Resources including Forestry and Wildlife
A total of 13 Biosphere Reserves have been set up so far in the country to protect representative eco-systems and to serve as laboratories for evolving alternative models of development.
UNESCO’s approval for designating the Sundarbans (West Bengal) and Gulf of Mannar (Tamil Nadu) Biosphere Reserves of the country on World Network of Biosphere Reserves was obtained.
Wetlands, Mangroves and Coral Reefs
Management Action Plans were prepared for 19 wetlands so far for conservation and management and two research projects were also approved to supplement Management Action Plans. In order to designate 25 more wetlands as Ramsar sites in the country, India has sent details of 16 wetlands to Ramsar Bureau after getting authentication of maps from Survey of India, Dehradun. Monographs of six Ramsar sites have been published so far by the country.
A Sub-Committee, constituted by the Ministry for formulation of guidelines for implementation of Management Action Plans on mangroves decided the cost-norms for plantation of mangroves in various States. The National Committee on Mangroves and Coral Reefs endorsed the recommendation of the Sub-Committee and financial assistance was provided to identified mangrove areas in the respective States.
A draft National Action Plan on mangroves and strategy for its implementation to ensure community participation in conservation of mangroves was prepared by the Ministry and circulated along with the guidelines on Joint Forest Management to all the concerned State Governments/UTs for their comments.
National Mangrove Genetic Resource Centre has been established at Bhitarkanika in Orissa.
The Ministry has launched an Indian Coral Reef Monitoring Network (ICRMN) to cover activities related to monitoring of health of Coral Reefs, training and capacity building, establishment of database network, promotion of research on the identified thrust areas with a view to integrate the same with the management of this fragile ecosystem.
Existing Centre of Zoological Survey of India at Port Blair has been designated as National Coral Reef Research Institute.
The Ministry has been identified as the National Focal Point of the International Coral Reef Initiative (ICRI), Corel Reef Degradation in Indian Ocean (CORDIO), Global Coral Reef Monitoring Network (GCRMN)
In order to prepare detailed micro-level action plans at States and regional levels based on the framework document, the Ministry has accessed funds from the Global Environment Facility (GEF) for the National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan (NBSAP), Project
A national workshop was held during the year to review the progress and sharing of experience for the Nodal Agencies in various States for the NBSAP project.
The three new States, namely, Chattisgarh, Jharkhand and Uttaranchal were pursued to designate the nodal agencies to implement the NBSAP project.
A Bio-diversity Festival was organized during the year at Delhi-Hatt, Delhi.
The Department Related Parliamentary Standing Committee completed the clause-wise discussions on the Biological Diversity Bill, introduced in the Parliament earlier and approved the Bill with certain amendments. The report of the Committee was also presented in both Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha during the year. Further actions to move the motion for passing the Bill are being undertaken.
The Biosafety Protocol has been signed by 105 countries, of which, eight have ratified it. India signed the protocol on 23-1-2001 and actions are being initiated to ratify the same.
In order to handle the issues relating to human health and environment from transgenic crops and other areas, the composition of the Genetic Engineering Approval Committee (GEAC) was expanded to include representatives from various departments and Ministries of the Government.
Medicinal plants have been identified as one of the thrust areas by the Ministry and different programmes encompassing activities in the area of medicinal plants were continued to carry out conservation of medicinal plants found in the forests and protected areas as well as cultivation of these plants in the degraded forest areas.
Medicinal Plants Conservation Areas (MPCA) in the southern States of Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka and Medicinal Plants Conservation Network (MPCN) established for in-situ conservation earlier continued their activities during the year.
An Indian Institute of Biodiversity is proposed to be set up in Itanagar, Arunachal Pradesh to design and conduct research on various aspects of biodiversity.
Assistance to Botanic Gardens
The Ministry has constituted an Expert Group to examine and recommend proposals received under the scheme on Assistance to Botanic Gardens to augment ex-situ conservation of rare endemic plants.
During the year, 20 institutions were provided financial assistance for improvement of infrastructural facilities in their botanical gardens.
The project for establishment of a National Botanic Garden at NOIDA-Delhi has been approved for implementation for a conservation-oriented garden in the country. Setting up of this garden will help India to fulfill its obligations as signatory to the Convention on Biological Diversity.
A two-volume, National Programme pertaining to Status Report on Desertification and National Action Programme, has been prepared and submitted to the Convention to Combat Desertification (CCD) Secretariat during the Fifth Session of the Conference of Parties (COP-5) to the UNCCD during the year.
A Regional Workshop was organized on Thematic Programme Network (TPN-2) for which India is the host, to identify gaps in knowledge, short-comings in R&D and in existing data as well as its applicability in the area of soil conservation and use of agro-forestry. The Network is being developed to help the member-countries to strengthen their existing infrastructure and capacity for tackling the problems relating to these areas.
Out of 103 proposals (forest-land involved more than 20 ha.) received from all the States/UTs during the year seeking approval under the Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980 for diversion of forest land for other purposes, 54 proposals were decided and the remaining were either closed for non-furnishing of information or returned to/withdrawn by the State Governments or were pending with the State Governments for want of additional information. In addition to these, decisions were also taken in respect of 187 proposals including those of the previous years.
A total number of 565 projects were approved upto 20 ha. under the Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980 by the six Regional Offices of the Ministry located at Bangalore, Bhopal, Bhubaneshwar, Lucknow, Shillong and Chandigarh.
A National Forestry Action Plan (NFAP), a comprehensive strategic long-term plan for the next 20 years has been formulated by the Ministry to address the issues underlining the major problems of the forestry sector in line with the National Forest Policy, 1988. A compendium of project profiles formulated by State Governments and national institutions has been prepared in this regard for presentation to international donors. A web site has also been developed for NFAP, which contains NFAP documents, project profiles and other relevant information.
The Centrally sponsored scheme, namely, "Introduction to Modern Forest Fire Control Methods" was reviewed after an evaluation carried out by an independent agency and based on the recommendations of the evaluation agency, the scheme has been recast and renamed as Forest Fire Control and Management. Presently, it is implemented in all the States as a centrally sponsored scheme.
To bridge the infrastructure gap in the forestry sector in the North Eastern Region, the Ministry considered releasing funds to the North-Eastern States based on their project proposals. During the year, an amount of Rs. 32.52 crores was released to all the States of North Eastern Region including Sikkim.
The concept of Joint Forest Management (JFM) was initiated earlier to involve the Village Communities in the development and protection of degraded forests on the basis of their taking a share of the usufruct from such areas. Twenty seven States have so far issued resolution on JFM. As on 1.12.2001, 14.25 million ha. of forest lands in the country are being managed and protected by 63000 JFM Committees.
During the year, ban on export of 29 species of plant, plant-portions and their derivatives obtained from wild, was continued. Export of six species of exotic birds was also continued subject to pre-shipment inspection and provision under CITES wherever required.
The Ministry in consultation with the various scientific institutions and experts working in the field of marine sciences, included several marine species under the purview of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972.
In order to make the provisions of Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 more effective, a Draft Amendment Bill has been prepared by the Ministry and was vetted by the Ministry of Law. It is proposed to introduce the Bill in the Parliament during the Budget Session, 2002.
The meeting of the reconstituted Indian Board for Wildlife was held during the year under the chairmanship of Hon’ble Prime Minister in which a series of resolutions were adopted for wildlife conservation.
The National Wildlife Action Plan (NWAP), 1983 has been revised and the new Wildlife Action Plan, 2002-2016 has been adopted. The Plan outlines the strategies, action points and the priority projects for conservation of wild flora and fauna in the country.
There are 89 National Parks and 497 wildlife sanctuaries in the country covering an area of 1.56 lakhs square Km. Financial assistance for development of National Parks and Sanctuaries was provided to 180 National Parks and Sanctuaries in 28 States (including North-Eastern States) and Union Territories in the country during the year.
Twentyseven Tiger Reserves have so far been set up in various States covering an area of about 37,761 Sq.Km. in the country. An amount of Rs. 18.35 crores was released to the various Tiger Range States including North Eastern States, as on December 2001 under the Project Tiger Scheme.
The India Eco-development Project is being implemented in seven areas, namely, Buxa, Palamau, Nagarhole, Periyar, Pench, Ranthambore, Tiger Reserves and Gir National Park to conserve biodiversity through eco-development.
Project Elephant is being implemented in 12 States of the country. Three elephant reserves were set up during the year in the States of Jharkhand, Orissa and Meghalay. An amount of Rs. 6.77 crores was released to the elephant-range States during the year for the purpose of habitat management, management of man-elephant conflict, payment of ex-gratia relief for the loss of life, strengthening of anti-poaching measures, capture and translocation of problem-elephant populations, etc.
Amendment of "Recognition of Zoo Rules, 1992" was made by taking into consideration the provision of better housing facilities for the animals, providing minimum area of enclosure for important species, redefining the norms of classification of Zoos and need for having technically qualified personnel for management of Zoos on scientific lines.
A Stud Book has been compiled for five endangered species with financial assistance from Central Zoo Authority and was sent to the International Stud Book Keepers for the species, for incorporation. During the year, an inventory of the animals for the year 2000-2001 and the third volume of Indian Zoo Year Book were published.
The National Zoological Park, New Delhi, at present, houses about 1200 animals of 136 species. During the year, 0:2 Leopard, 1:2 Emu, 1:1 Hyaena, 1:2 Sikka Deer and 1:1 Wolf were added to the National Zoological Park (NZP) collection.
Environmental Impact Assessment
A total number of 300 projects were appraised for environmental and site clearance during the year. Out of these, 121 projects were cleared, 57 were either rejected or closed and the remaining 122 projects were pending at the end of the year.
Under the provisions of Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) Notification, various expert committees were reconstituted for different sectors for appraisal of projects received for environmental clearance.
Keeping in view the size of the projects and their environmental impact, the Ministry has further amended the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) Notification, in August, 2001 to dispense with the requirement of public hearing in various categories of projects like widening and strengthening of highways, mining projects with lease area of upto 25 ha., units located in export processing zones, special economic zones, modernization of existing irrigation canals, small scale industrial undertakings located in industrial estates/areas or under the jurisdiction of industrial development authorities, etc.
For time-bound processing of proposals for public hearing, submitted to various State Pollution Control Boards, the EIA Notification was amended and time-limit of 60 days has been laid down for completion of public hearing.
With a view to improving the environmental appraisal process and to incorporate compliance of the already approved projects in decision-making, the Ministry has undertaken capacity building programme in the areas of environmental clearance of projects, development of manuals and guides for preparation of environmental impact assessment/environmental management plan related matters under the World Bank assisted Environment Management Capacity Building Project.
Prevention and Control of Pollution
Nineteen additional potential industrial sectors have been identified for establishing Waste Minimization Circles and fifteen new circles have been established under Waste Minimization in Small Scale Industries project.
A Mission Management Board under the Chairmanship of the Chief Secretary, UP has been constituted to oversee the implementation, monitoring and reviewing of the various programmes /schemes formulated under Taj Protection Mission. During the year a sum of Rs. 35 crores was provided for different schemes under the Mission.
As on 31.12.2001, out of 1,551 highly polluting industries, 1,350 industries have provided the necessary pollution control facilities, 177 industries have been closed down and remaining 24 industries are defaulting in the 17 categories of identified highly polluting industries,. Legal actions under the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 have been taken for all the defaulting units.
The Ministry has setup environmental standards for almost all categories of polluting industries. During the year standards for soda-ash, brick kilns, coke oven plants, DG sets etc, were reviewed.
The Ministry has issued various notifications under the Environment (Protection) act, 1986 to regulate and control noise pollution. During the year, noise limits for motor vehicles at the manufacturing stage have been revised and noise limits for the generator sets run on petrol and kerosene were also prescribed.
During the year work has been taken up for 53 districts covering 16 States to prepare District-wise Zoning Atlas for siting of industries. Under the Environmental Management Plans for Urban Areas programme, preparation of Environmental Management Plans have been taken up for Taj Trapezium Zone (UP), Mining Areas of Dhanbad, Jharkhand, Korba (MP) residential township of Vasai Virar of Thane (Maharastra), tourism areas of Bakel Fort (Kerala) and Biosphere Reserve of Pachmarhi (MP).
As on 30-09-2001, out of 851, grossly polluting industries discharging their effluents directly into rivers and lakes, 608 industries have installed pollution control systems to comply with the prescribed standards, 238 industries have been closed and 5 industries have to install the necessary pollution control systems to comply with the present standards.
In consultation with the Ministry, the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has notified inter-alia Mass Emission Standards for vehicles with Gross Vehicle Weight exceeding 3500kg and same is effective in NCT of Delhi from 24.10.2001. Mass Emission Standards for LPG driven vehicles was also notified and is effective from 24.05.2001.
As a result of rigorous monitoring by the Environment Pollution (Prevention & Control) Authority for the National Capital Region, Petrol with 1% benzene maximum is made available in the NCR from 01.04.2001.
Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) as cleaner auto-fuel has been introduced in Mumbai, Delhi, Baroda and Surat. Eighty Seven CNG stations have been commissioned and about 51,175 vehicles including 2,522 buses are plying on CNG mode in Delhi. As on 22.11.2001, 24 CNG outlets are in operation and about 26,296 vehicles are plying on CNG mode in Mumbai.
The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) has established a National Ambient Air Quality Monitoring (NAMP) network comprising of 290 stations in 92 cities / towns under the Air (Prevention & Control of Pollution) Act, 1981 to collect, compile and disseminate information on air quality.
The CPCB also continued the monitoring of water quality programme at 507 monitoring stations throughout the country out of which 414 stations are on rivers, 25 on ground water, 38 on lakes and 30 on canals, creeks, drains, ponds etc.
The CPCB also continued the study for the development of Clean Technology for iron-ore mines and development of environmental standards, thereafter eleven thermal power plants of West Bengal, each having capacity exceeding 100 MW were also studied for the status of pollution control, fly-ash management and performance of air pollution control equipments.
Studies on inventorisation of hazardous waste generation in various states to identify hazardous waste generating units, quantification of hazardous waste generated and present practices adopted for hazardous waste management by various industrial sectors were continued by the Central Pollution Control Board. During the year such studies have been carried out in the states of West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, and Union Territories of Chandigarh, Pondicherry, Daman Diu and Dadra and Nagar Haveli. The Board has also initiated action for preparation of laboratory manual for the regulatory agencies for the purpose of characterization and analysis of hazardous wastes.
Hazardous Substances Management
Implementation of both the Manufacture, Storage and Import of hazardous Chemicals Rule 1989 and the Chemicals Accidents (Emergency Planning Preparedness and Response) Rules, 1996 was constantly pursued and monitored by the Ministry for ensuring chemicals safety . At present there are 1460 major accident hazard Units in 28 districts of the country and 1395 on-site plans and 114 off-site plans have been prepared. All the States except Bihar & J&K have constituted State Level Crisis Groups.
Out of 65 studies initiated earlier for hazard analysis in Hazard Prone Industrial Pockets, 53 have been completed . During the year, 10 new pockets were also identified for such studies.
A comprehensive set of rules entitled "Batteries (Management & Handling) Rules 2001" was notified by the Ministry during the year to regulate the collection, channelisation and recycling as well as import of used lead acid batteries in the country.
Final comments on the recommendations of the High Powered Committee, constituted earlier as per the directives of the Supreme Court for "Management of Hazardous Waste" have been submitted to the Hon’ble Supreme Court during the year.
Out of 232 proposals considered by the Ministry under the scheme "Registration of recyclers/reprocess of wastes as actual users having environmentally sound management facilities", 119 units were granted registration, 44 were rejected and 69 cases were deferred during the year.
Draft amendments to the Hazardous Wastes (Management and Handling) Rules, 2000 has been finalised.
As a follow-up on Coimbatore charter, a Committee on Plastic Waste Disposal under the Chairmanship of Sh. Ranganath Mishra former Chief Justice of the Hon’ able Supreme Court has been constituted during the year.
The Ministry participated in the 18th and 19th sessions of the Technical Working Group and the 3rd and 4th session of the Legal Working Group of the Basel Convention during the year.
Draft amendments to the Recycled Plastics Manufacture and Usage Rules was finalized in consultation with the committee on Plastic Waste Disposal.
Regeneration and Development
National River Conservation Directorate
The Ganga Action Plan (GAP Phase-I) Model, with necessary corrections on the basis of lessons learnt and experience gained for GAP Phase-I, has been applied to the major polluted rivers of the country under the National River Conservation Plan (NRCP).
Under the Ganga Action Plan (Main Stem) (GAP-II, MS), pollution abatement works have been taken up in 59 towns, of which 22 are in U.P., 14 in Bihar and 23 in West Bengal. Out of 115 schemes of pollution abatement sanctioned under the Plan, 13 schemes have been completed so far. After launching the NRCP, it was decided to merge the GAP-Phase-II with NRCP and a notification in this regard has been issued.
The Yamuna Action Plan at present covers pollution abatement works in 21 towns with an approved cost of Rs. 509.45 crores, out of which, an expenditure of Rs. 466.63 crores has been incurred so far. Out of the 141 schemes of pollution abatement sanctioned under the plan, 106 schemes have been completed and the remaining are at different stages of completion.
The U.P. Government/U.P. Jal Nigam have listed 10 priority schemes for being taken up in the first phase under the Gomti Action Plan. The NRCD has approved six projects amounting to Rs. 25.45 crores so far under the Plan.
Under Damodar Action Plan, pollution abatement works are being taken up in 12 towns, of which eight are in Jharkhand and four in West Bengal. About 68 MLD of sewage is targeted to be intercepted, diverted and treated under these works.
The NRCD took steps for public involvement and participation in the light of experience gained in the implementation of development programmes under Ganga Action Plan and accordingly, reframed its guidelines in this regard. Public participation is being given high priority by involving local bodies, social organizations and NGOs through wider publicity and voluntary involvement.
A proposal for conservation of three lakes, namely, Powai in Maharashtra and Ooty and Kodaikanal in Tamil Nadu was approved under National Lake Conservation Plan at an estimated cost of Rs. 14.90 crore.
National Afforestation and Eco-development Board
The 100% centrally sponsored scheme, namely, Integrated Afforestation and Eco-development Project Scheme (IAEPS), to promote afforestation and development of degraded forests and adjoining lands has been extended to include 100% centrally sponsored Coastal Shelterbelt Plantations after the devastating Orissa Cyclone, as a thrust area. A total of 160 projects including 13 from coastal shelterbelt plantations and 31 for forest development agency, have been sanctioned so far under the scheme.
The Samanvit Gram Vanikaran Samriddhi Yojana and creation of Forest Development Agency, under IAEPS is being implemented in the first phase on pilot basis from the year 2000-01 onwards in selected territorial/wildlife forest Division, in all States/UTs, which have adopted Joint Forest Management resolutions.
Under 100% centrally sponsored Conservation and Development of Non-Timber Forest Produce (NTFP) including medicinal plants scheme, financial assistance was provided to the State Governments, for increasing the production of NTFP including medicinal plants. As on 15.1.2002, an amount of Rs. 19.77 crores was released to various States under the scheme.
After identification of Bamboo and medicinal plantation as one of the thrust areas of the Ministry, projects solely for Bamboo and Medicinal Plantations, are being sanctioned separately under the NTFP scheme. During the year, an amount of Rs. 6.58 crores for Bamboo Plantations and Rs. 2.35 crores for medicinal plants was released to the State Governments as on 15.1.2002.
The seven Regional Centres of the Board located in universities and national level institutions continued to help NAEB in promoting extension of replicable technologies and for dissemination of research findings.
Financial assistance continued to be provided to various NGOs and other voluntary agencies for afforestation and tree-planting activities under the Grants-in-Aid scheme during the year.
An inter-Ministerial Task Force has been constituted in the Ministry to evolve a holistic and integrated approach for sustainable management of jhum affected lands. A two-day Workshop of the Task Force was organized at Shillong during the year, wherein Government representatives of North Eastern States, academicians, NGOs, etc., participated in the deliberations.
During the year, under the Research and Development Schemes, 41 new research projects were initiated, 26 studies were completed and 119 on-going projects were reviewed and monitored.
The GB Pant Institute of Himalayan Environment and Development conducted various experiments on steep slopes to address the issue of slope stabilization. It has been established that low-cost bio-engineering techniques are effective in reducing soil erosion. The institute also undertook several case studies to strengthen the value of indigenous knowledge system.
The techniques/methodologies developed by the institute to establish gene banks through studies were disseminated among the general public people through peoples’ participation workshop.
A study on EIA of desiltation operation at Bhimtal Lake was undertaken by the GB Pant Institute to highlight the need for incorporation of additional activities in the list of projects for which EIA is mandatory. Another study on Air Quality Monitoring and Solid Waste Characterization was undertaken by the Institute to address the issue of growing menace of solid waste in the Himalayan region, especially in view of increased tourism activity.
The GB Pant Institute continued the funding of research projects in remote areas of the Indian Himalayan region through Integrated Eco-Development Research Programme. Out of the funded projects, 16 projects were completed and 47 are in progress in ten Indian Himalayan States.
The Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education (ICFRE) and its eight research institutes and three centres of advanced studies located in various parts of the country continued several research activities to cater to the research needs of different bio-geographical regions of the country.
The ICFRE has established 3373 ha. Seed Production Areas, 13 ha. Clonal Seed Orchards, 5.96 ha., Seedling Seed Orchards, 3.5 ha. Vegetative Multiplication Gardens for Important Species, and six modern nurseries in different States of the country during the year.
All the eight Research Institutes of the ICFRE, located at Dehradun, Coimbatore, Bangalore, Jabalpur, Jorhat, Jodhpur, Shimla, Ranchi, Chindwara and Allahabad continued the various research activities in the forestry related areas and evolved several new techniques for a number of species for its conservation, propagation and promotion.
The Indian Plywood Industries Research & Training Institute, Bangalore, continued research in its major areas like, reconstituted/composite wood from fast growing plantation, timbers, development of wood alternates from bamboo and their applications and technologies for making consumer products from other renewable fibres.
The Wildlife Institute of India (WII), Dehradun continued its research activities on the ecological, biological, socio-economic and managerial aspects of wildlife conservation in various parts of the country.
While a total number of nine research projects were completed, the Institute also continued 21 research projects on various aspects of wildlife conservation, habitat management and other related issues in regard to several species during the year.
National Natural Resource Management System (NNRMS)
The Standing Committee on Bio-resources and Environment (SC-B) constituted by the Planning Commission recommended more than 60 remote sensing application projects addressing key environmental and ecological issues such as management of forests, grassland, faunal resources, wetland, coastal areas, land degradation, river pollution, etc. 32 projects have so far been completed under the NNRMS Scheme and the remaining are in various stages of completion.
Education, Training and Information
Forestry Education, Training and Extension
To strengthen the infrastructure for forestry faculties in the universities imparting forestry training at graduate/post graduate levels, assistance was provided to various universities by the ICFRE, Dehradun during the year. M.Sc. forestry curriculum was also prepared and circulated to all Indian Universities for implementation.
The Forest Research Institute undertook Doctoral and Post Doctoral Research Programmes in various disciplines of forestry at different institute of ICFRE. Post graduate diploma courses on Plantation Technology, Pulp and Paper Technology and Bio-diversity Conservation were also imparted during the year.
The Indira Gandhi National Forest Academy (IGNFA), Dehradun, undertook training programmes for 22, 25 & 22 IFS probationers belonging to 1999, 2000 & 2001 courses respectively. The academy also conducted 10 in-service training courses during the year in which a total number of 257 officers participated.
Nine training courses of varied durations on ‘Application of Remote Sensing, GIS, Data processing etc.’ in forest resource assessment were organized by the Forest Survey of India, Dehradun, during the year to various forestry personnel.
The Directorate of Forest Education, Dehradun, organized various short-term courses, and in-service courses for State Forest Service Personnel, Range Forest Officers etc. during the year.
The Indian Plywood Industries Research and Training Institute (IPIRTI) Bangalore, conducted Post Graduate Diploma courses in "Mechanical Wood Industries Technology" and several short-term courses for the industry personnel for enhancing their skills and professional competence during the year. The institute also organized training courses for Senior Indian Forest Service Officers (IFS) during the year.
The Indian Institute of Forest Management (IIFM), Bhopal, continued its 13th batch consisting of 39 students for the ‘Post Graduate Diploma in Forestry Management’. The institute also conducted its 8th batch consisting of nine participants. in "Post Masters Course in Natural Resources Management" during the year.
Wildlife Education and Training
The XXII P.G Diploma Course for the officers from various States/Union Territories in the country as well as from other countries was completed by the Wildlife Institute of India (WII) Dehradun, during the year.
The VIII M.Sc. course on ‘Wildlife Science’, was started by WII during the year
A special course on specialized module on Bio-diversity Conservation and Wildlife Management was organized by the institute in collaboration with IGNFA, Dehradun.
Various training programmes on Wildlife Management, Biodiversity Conservation, Eco-tourism Planning and Management, Wetland Conservation and Management in the Protected Areas, etc., were also conducted by the WII during the year.
National Museum of Natural History (NMNH)
Special in-house as well as outreach oriented programmes were regularly organized and conducted by the NMNH throughout the year for the benefit of school children, college students, teachers and the general public.
Special programmes to commemorate the 23rd Foundation Day of NMNH and the World Environment Day were organized on 5th June’2001 during the year. A website of NMNH was launched on this occasion. Essay, painting competitions and open-house quiz competition for school children were also organized by the museum to celebrate the Earth Day.
NMNH coordinated the participation of the Ministry in the Republic Day Parade, 2002 by designing a tableau on theme of nature conservation. The Chipko movement and the sacrifice of the Bishnoi Community for protection of trees and conservation of nature and natural resources, were depicted in the tableau.
The Regional Museums of Natural History at Mysore, Bhopal and Bhubaneswar continued diverse activities on conservation and education amongst various target groups during the year.
Fellowships and Awards
The Indira Gandhi Paryavaran Puraskar (IGPP) for the year 1998 & 1999 were finalized for both individual as well as organization category.
Pitamber Pant National Environment fellowship award for 2000 was conferred on Dr. A.D. Bhide of National Environmental Engineering Research Institute, Nagpur.
The B.P. Pal National Environment Fellowship Award for Bio-diversity for the year 2000 & 2001 was conferred on Dr. Pramod Tandon of North Eastern Hill University, Shillong and Dr. R.K. Kohli of Punjab University, Chandigarh respectively.
Rajiv Gandhi National Wildlife Conservation Award for the year 2000 was given to Late Sh. S. Deb Roy in the individual category and to the Wildlife Institute of India, Dehradun in the organizational category respectively in recognition of their outstanding contributions in protection and conservation of wildlife in the country.
Environmental Education, Awareness and Training
Formal Environmental Education
The Ministry interacted actively with the UGC, NCERT and the Ministry of Human Resource Development, for introducing and expanding environmental concepts, themes, issues, etc., in the curricula of schools and colleges.
The study on ‘Status of Infusion of Environmental Concepts in the School Curricula and the Effectiveness of its Delivery’ under the Environment Education in School System sub-component of the World Bank assisted Environment Management Capacity Building Project was completed during the year. Based on the recommendations of the study, pilot implementation of the project was taken up in eight selected states of the country.
Non-formal Environment Education and Awareness
The National Environment Awareness Campaign (NEAC) for 2001-2002 was organized by the Ministry with the major theme as "Sustainable Development" as well as with action oriented components on various environmental issues like keeping sources of drinking water clean, ensuring proper management of garbage, introducing "no plastic" concept in villages, protection of trees and plantation, pesticides free agriculture etc.
Under this campaign, about 5,875 organizations were provided financial assistance for organizing various awareness creating activities, for preparation and distribution of environment education resource material and for different action oriented activities on these issues. Diverse target groups ranging from students/youth/teachers to tribal, rural population, professionals etc. were covered under the campaign.
The Ministry has decided to intensify the Eco-clubs programme to increase coverage and activities with the intention of mobilizing youth for environmental action during the year as a follow-up of the Coimbatore charter. The student members of Eco-clubs constitute the National Green Corps (NGC). The program aims to establish Eco-clubs in atleast 100 schools in each district of the country thereby covering around 55,000 schools.
A mass awareness campaign has been launched by the Ministry to spread wide awareness about environmental issues and sensitize people, institutions and industry to the necessity of preserving good environment. A high-powered media committee has been constituted in the Ministry to work out a strategy for running the campaign.
The Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment (GLOBE) - an International Science and Education Programme with stress on hands-on participatory approach started in India during the year. The programme unites students, teachers and scientists all over the world and is aimed at school children. So far about 100 schools spread over different parts of the country have joined this programme.
Fortyone proposals were supported for financial assistance under Seminars/Symposia/Workshops Scheme to provide a common forum to professionals for sharing uptodate knowledge on various technical issues related to environment during the year.
Centres of Excellence
Both CEE and CPREEC organized a number of training programmes on environmental education designed for different or specific target groups and conducted a number of exhibitions on environment and its related areas in order to inculcate awareness among the people for conservation of nature and natural resources.
During the year, Centre for Environment Education (CEE), Ahmedabad and the CPR Environmental Education Centre (CPREEC), Chennai developed several innovative programmes and material for creating environmental awareness across the country.
During the year, the Centre for Ecological Sciences, (CES), Bangalore carried out 25 projects in the broad areas of bio-diversity of India, ecology and conservation biology, animal behaviour, mathematical ecology and evolution, conservation genetics and molecular ecology, climate variability, eco-development, and energy and environment.
The Centre for Mining Environment (CME), Dhanbad, continued its three-semester M.Tech. programme in Environmental Science & Engineering and provided environmental management inputs for academic activities of the Indian School of Mines, (ISM) Dhanbad. In addition the center also organized several training programmes on environmental management in mining areas, and conducted a number of R&D activities in its field during the year.
The Salim Ali Centre for Ornithology and Natural History (SACON), Coimbatore continued its research activities in ornithology and all aspects of biodiversity during the year. The important achievements include scientific recommendations for the conservation of the Niligiri Laughing Thrush, Nilgiri Wood Pegion, Nilgiri Pipit, Andaman Teal, Narcondam Hornbill, Nicobar Megapode etc.
The Centre for Environmental Management of Degraded Eco-system (CEMDE), New Delhi, continued its activities in regard to maintenance of bio-diversity in protected areas, ecological restoration of degraded lands and valuation of ecosystems services. The center outlined its major findings in regard to the conservation of bio-diversity of Great Nicobar Biosphere Reservoir and ecological restoration of degraded lands during the year.
The Tropical Botanic Garden and Research Institute (TBGRI), Tiruvananthapuram, continued its activities relating to the development of conservations strategies focusing on both in-situ & ex-situ methods and characterization of plant resources by using R&D tools for sustainable utilization during the year.
The Environmental Information System (ENVIS) Network with the focal point in the Ministry and its 25 subject-area nodes, known as ENVIS Centres located throughout the country, continued its activities in environmental information collection, collation, storage, retrieval and dissemination to its users.
‘Paryavaran Abstract’, a quarterly journal reporting information on environmental research in Indian context continued to be published by the ENVIS Focal Point. The relevant database of Paryavaran Abstracts has also been developed and included in the Ministry’s website for easy and quick retrieval of relevant information by the users.
"ENVIRONEWS", a quarterly newsletter of the Ministry reporting various important policies, programmes, enactment of new legislations/rules, important notifications and other decisions taken by the Ministry from time to time continued to be published by ENVIS Focal Point during the year.
The ENVIS Network responded to a total number of 14,920 queries during the year, of which 14,105 were national and 815 were international.
The homepage of the Ministry, developed by the ENVIS Focal Point, was periodically updated during the year. Several major documents including Annual Report, Environews, Paryavaran Abstracts, State-of-environment Report, guidelines for the funding schemes, etc., published by the Ministry were fed into the homepage by ENVIS Focal Point. These can be browsed at the URL : http://envfor.nic.in.
The Sustainable Development Networking Programme (SDNP), a joint project of UNDP and IDRC, Canada and implemented by ENVIS came to an end on 31.12.2001. Updation of the website of SDNP developed under the programme earlier continued to be carried out to provide information on 25 thematic areas on environment and its related issues which have a bearing on sustainable development. The website could be browsed at URL: http://sdnp.delhi.nic.in.
The ENVIS focal point started implementing the World Bank assisted Environmental Management Capacity Building Technical Assistance Project (EMCBTAP) which aims to strengthen the ENVIS Scheme by expanding its reach through involvement of additional institutions / organizations in State Govt., academic sector, corporate sector, NGOs etc., during the year. A total number of about 90 EMCB-ENVIS Nodes is targeted to be setup throughout the country under the Project.
in the 2nd Meeting held on 21-02-2002 the Monitoring Committee set up for the EMCB-ENVIS Project identified 21 thrust areas for setting up of nodes under the project.
ENVIS also continued to function as a National Focal Point (NFP) and a Regional Service Centre (RSC) for South-Asia Sub-Region Countries for INFOTERRA Network, a global Information Network of the United Nations’ Environment Programme. As NFP and RSC of INFOTERRA, the ENVIS network provided information to about 815 queries received from the various sub-region countries during the year.
All the ENVIS Centres continued their activities related to the development of the databases in their specific subject-area and dissemination of information to all concerned. Apart from the publication of newsletters in the specific subject-areas, other relevant documents/journals were also brought out. Several ENVIS Centres also developed websites in their respective areas of specialisation.
Legislation and Institutional Support
The Ministry has issued 18 notifications on different products criteria to help consumers to contribute their might in the protection of the environment. A brochure on eco-mark has also been brought out for awareness building in this regard. Steps for dissemination of information to popularize the labeling of environment-friendly products were also initiated during the year.
Reports on environmental rating of Indian auto-mobile sector has been prepared and released during the year under the Green Rating Project.
Four hundred and fifty industries have taken ISO 14000 certification to have environmental management system to facilitate best supporting technologies and other environmental aspects such as eco-labeling, life-cycle analysis and product standards. Bureau of Indian Standards is the nodal agency for ISO 14000 certification and other related matters.
A Citizens Charter relating to the Ministry has been prepared on the guidelines provided by Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances (DARPG) during the year. The charter was examined by the Core Group set up by the DARPG and was approved. The salient features of the Charter includes the Ministry’s vision, aims and objectives, details of business transacted, statement of services provided, details of clients, customers and grievance redress mechanisms, expectations from the client/citizen and the contact points in the Ministry for the citizens for their grievances, etc.,
The 9th session of Commission on Sustainable Development, held in April, 2001 considered various issues like atmosphere/energy, information for decision-making, energy/transport, etc. and reviewed the progress of implementation of the Agenda 21. The Indian delegation was headed by Hon’ble MEF in the Session.
The Seventh Special Session of Governing Council/Global Ministerial Environment Forum of UNEP was held in February 2002 in Columbia for discussion on the subject of international environmental governance and preparation for the World Summit on Sustainable Development, scheduled to be held in August 2002 at Johannesburg.
The Global Environment Cell (GEC) with UNDP assistance continued to provide technical and scientific inputs in the process of project formulation including those for Global Environment Facility (GEF) assistance. Fifteen projects were approved in principle under GEF and are in the preparatory phase.
Under UNDP/GEF Small Grants Programme, 68 projects were funded in principle. A National Steering Committee was also constituted in the Ministry to review the progress of these projects.
Under India Canada Environment Facility (ICEF), 20 projects have been approved so far with a total outlay of Rs. 162.56 crores.
During the year, the parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), reached a significant agreement at Bonn in July on implementation of the key elements of the Convention and the Kyoto Protocol as well as made further progress at Marrakesh, that led to Marrakesh Accord, which paves the way to the ratification of Kyoto Protocol.
Hon’ble Minister of Environment and Forests led the Indian delegation to attend the Seventh Conference of Parties (COP-7) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, held in Marrakesh, from 29th October – 9th November 2001. Secretary (E&F) was the alternate leader of the delegation.
The International Day for the Protection of the Ozone Layer was celebrated at Hyderabad on 16.9.2001. On this occasion, the fourth edition of the book entitled "The Montreal Protocol - India’s Success Story" and a set of newly designed posters, special covers, stickers, etc., were released. An exhibition of ozone-friendly products developed by industry with assistance from Montreal Protocol Multilateral Fund was also organized during the occasion.
Thirty six investment projects costing US$ 11.13 million and 12 non-investment projects costing US$ 0.91 million were approved by the Executive Committee of the Montreal Protocol Multilateral Fund to phase-out ozone depleting substances during the year.
Memorandum of Understanding/Agreements with Germany, Austria, Vietnam, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Iran, Russia and China and Letter of Intents with Brazil and USA were signed by India on various bilateral matters relating to environment and forests.
Under the World Bank assisted Environment Management Capacity Building (EMCB) Project, the EIA sub-component, the mining sub-component, the ambient air quality monitoring sub-component, the development of standards sub-component, the environment law component, the environmental research sub-component were continued during the year. An ENVIS sub-component was also started for implementation during the year under EMCB Project to broaden the ambit of ENVIS by including various subject-areas, themes, local conditions, issues and to establish a nation-wide web-enabled network for environmental information.
Administration, Civil Construction, Plan Coordination and Budget
The sanctioned strength of the Ministry, including the National Afforestation & Eco-development Board and the National River Conservation Directorate at the Head Quarters presently is 1,181 under various groups out of which 932 employees are in position.
During the year, 580 parliament questions pertaining to various aspects of environment, forests and wildlife were dealt with by the Ministry, out of which, 338 were in the Lok Sabha and 242 were belonging to the Rajya Sabha.
In pursuance of the instructions issued by Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances, the Ministry has been implementing a scheme for grant of cash awards to the Sections/Desk/Units for encouraging high performance in O&M activities.
The Ministry is the cadre controlling authority for the Indian Forests Service consisting of 24 State cadres. The present authorized strength of the Service is 2756. During the year, "Cadre Review" revising the strength and composition of Orissa, Maniopur, Tripura, Himachal Pradesh, Maharashtra, Nagaland, AGMUT, and Madhya Pradesh cadres were conducted and completed.
A Grievances Cell has been constituted to attend to the complaints of public regarding environmental problems. Joint Secretary (Administration) has been nominated as Public Grievances Officer of the Ministry. During the year, 556 grievances were received from the general public, majority of which were related to control of pollution.
The Office Council of the Ministry constituted under the Joint Consultative Machinery (JCM) Scheme continued its activities during the year. One meeting of the Council was held to discuss and sort-out various matters pertaining to the staff.
"Hindi Fortnight" was celebrated during 14-28th September 2001 and number of competitions like Hindi Essay Writing, Quiz, Noting/Drafting, Hindi Typing and Dictation, etc were organized during this fortnight. In all these competitions, an amount of Rs. 44,600/- was given as awards to the 97 officers/employees of the Ministry.
The ‘Medini Award Scheme’ with the objective of encouraging original Hindi book writing on subjects related to Environment, Forestry, Wildlife, etc. was implemented by the Ministry and cash awards were given to the winners under the scheme.
The "Paryavaran" magazine in Hindi containing scientific and technical articles was brought out regularly by the Ministry during the year.
Civil Construction Unit
The Civil Construction Unit (CCU) of the Ministry completed 20 civil construction activities in various wings of the Ministry, its attached and subordinate offices as well as autonomous organizations located in various parts of the country.
The use of timber was stopped in civil construction of buildings and its substitutes are being used in all construction works in order to promote better environment. As a measure of conservation of electric energy, low-powered CFL fittings are being used in all common places and solar heating system are used in hostels and office buildings at high altitudes.
Plan Coordination and Budget
An outlay of Rs. 800.00 crores has been allocated to the Ministry in various sectors in the Annual Plan 2001-2002 against Rs. 850.00 crores for 2000-2001.
An outlay of Rs. 990.00 crores in the various sectors has been allocated to the Ministry for the Annual Plan 2002-2003.