Shimla,May 09:Shri J.P. Nadda, Forest Minister said here today that the World Bank has approved the Bio Carbon Credit Project in principle and directed the Forest and Environment Departments to ensure that the Project Design Document (PDD) and the Tripartite Agreement was ready within three weeks for the approval of the Cabinet and the World Bank. He was addressing the officers of Forest and Environment Departments in a review meeting held here today to follow up on the visit of the delegation to Costa Rica and the World Bank at Washington.
Shri Nadda said that the Bio Carbon Credit Project would be first of its kind in the country and should be signed with the World Bank by July, 2008 positively. He said that Forest and Environment Departments should examine the benefit-sharing model of environmental conservation of Costa Rica by which the consumers of environmental benefits make financial payments to local communities who play a vital role in protecting the environment.
Forest Minister asked the two departments to study whether this model could be replicated in the CAT Plans, Catchment Areas of drinking water supply schemes in the major towns of the State and in the hydel projects. Such a programme could benefit all the stakeholders namely the projects, local communities besides environment of the State, he added.
Shri Nadda said that the objectives of the departments should be the involvement of local communities in the conservation of environment and added that Government would endeavour to develop more programmes for PES (Payment for Environmental Services).
The Minister also reviewed preparation for preventing and controlling forest fires during summer months and also announced that Government would sanction a monthly allowance of Rs. 100 towards mobile phones bills for Forest Guards and Range Officers during summer season so that better communication channels are established for immediate response and preventive action.
Shri Avay Shukla, Additional Chief Secretary, Forest, Ms. Harinder Hira, Principal Secretary, Environment and Scientific Technologies and senior officers of the Forest and Environment Departments were present on the occasion