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Coal Ministry Surpasses Afforestation Targets, Greening Over 2734 Hectares in FY 2023-24

The Coal Ministry  planted 51 lakh saplings, covering 2734 hectares in FY 2023-24, contributing to India’s environmental conservation efforts and NDC commitments


In the fiscal year 2023-24, the Coal Ministry has demonstrated commitment to environmental conservation by planting over 51 lakh saplings. This ambitious afforestation drive has expanded the green cover over a substantial 2734 hectares of land, surpassing the initial fiscal target of 2400 hectares. An additional 372 hectares have been transformed through grassing, effectively stabilising soil, enhancing moisture retention, and mitigating erosion on reclaimed land. Notably, in the preceding fiscal year 2022-23, the Coal and Lignite Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) under the Ministry of Coal had already planted approximately 50 lakh saplings, covering 2370 hectares of land.

Over the last five years, Coal and Lignite PSUs have made an impact, bolstering the nation’s ecological standing by adding 10,894 hectares to the green cover. This monumental achievement was made possible through the planting of more than 233 lakh saplings under the careful guidance and supervision of the Coal Ministry. Annual plantation campaigns in the coal sector have spanned various areas, including avenue plantation, overburden dump areas, residential colonies, riverbanks, and roadsides. Furthermore, innovative techniques such as miyawaki plantation, seed ball plantation, the development of grasslands, and the use of drone technology for challenging terrains have been actively adopted.

India’s coal sector has emerged as a key player in reshaping its ecological impact, aligning closely with the nation’s sustainability objectives and environmental preservation. The relentless focus on greening and reclamation of mined-out areas by Coal/Lignite PSUs has significantly contributed to the augmentation of India’s forest and tree cover. These efforts are not only in line with the National Mission for a Green India (GIM), a critical component of the National Action Plan on Climate Change, but also directly support the Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) commitment to create an additional carbon sink of 2.5 to 3 billion tonnes of CO2 equivalent by increasing forest and tree cover by 2030.

Going beyond afforestation endeavors, the coal sector is actively involved in promoting the development of eco-parks and mine tourism sites. So far, fifteen such eco-parks/mine tourism sites have been successfully established by Coal/Lignite PSUs, with seven seamlessly integrated into the local tourism circuit. Looking forward, the Coal/Lignite PSUs have laid out ambitious plans to establish 19 new eco-parks and tourism sites in coal mining areas, fostering sustainable tourism and environmental preservation. The estimated funds allocated for these initiatives amount to a substantial ₹128 crore. These eco-parks, featuring tree plantations and grasslands, serve as pivotal components of green landscapes and play a vital role as carbon sinks.

Coal Ministry Surpasses Afforestation Targets, Greening Over 2734 Hectares in FY 2023-24

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