Centre sanctions Rs
5.12 cr conservation project for Spiti in HP
Shimla, September 14
The Spiti area was the only one among 18 such zones in the country to have been declared a CDBR in 2009.
The project aims at conserving medicinal plants, rare wildlife species and natural water bodies found in the cold desert. The plan was submitted by the wildlife wing of the state Forest Department. The project will be implemented through local committees, including women representative from gram panchayats, over a period of five years. The department has already received Rs 81.48 lakh in the first phase for 2014-15.
In order to sensitise local inhabitants about environment and biodiversity conservation, the state government is carrying out various initiatives to exploit the precious forest wealth and non-conventional energy, which would help improve the socio-economic conditions of tribal residents.
Bestowed with abundant natural beauty and representing unique bio-physical features of the trans-Himalayan ecosystem, the Spiti CDBR, spread over an area of 7,770 sq km, includes the Pin Valley National Park and its surroundings, Chandertal, Sarchu and Kibber Wildlife Sanctuary.
With effective implementation of the project, efforts would be made to include the Spiti CDBR under the "Man and Biosphere" (MAB) programme of UNESCO.
The components of the Comprehensive Management Action Plan (CAMP) include awareness and capacity building of local communities and staff, improving infrastructural facilities, habitat restoration, biodiversity conservation, socio-economic development through promotion of farm cultivation and animal husbandry, non-conventional energy and fuel saving devices, water supply, cultivation for medicinal and aromatics plants.
The CDBR is dominated by more than 500 herbaceous and scrub species and 118 species of medicinal and aromatic plants.
The shrub species found in the area are junipers, hippophae, myricaria, caragna, rosa, lonicera and ephedra.
The high value medicinal species include aconitum, podophyllum, swertia, rheum, thymus and picrorrhiza.
The rare wildlife species found in the region are snow leopard, wolf, brown and black bear, blue sheep, ibex, Tibetan gazzle, red fox, weasel, marmot, griffon, lammergeyer, golden eagle and snow cock.
The components of the CAMP also include the ongoing Snow Leopard Protection Programme being implemented at a cost of Rs 5.15 crore in parts of the Spiti CDBR.
The study and research proposals included dissemination of best practices of biodiversity conservation, monitoring of receding glaciers and climate change.
Preserving rare species