Proposed Strategy For Forest Education

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This strategy was adopted on the assumption that Pakistan has enough forests to meet present and future national needs! The truth of the matter, however, is that high timber state forests cover only 2.5% or less of our total area and there is absolutely no chance for any further increase in its area in future. New Chhanga Manga, Chichawatni or Daffar plantations are not possible any more. The Existing irrigated plantations are very poorly any managed and are anyway, causing an annual economic loss of Rs. 1500-2000 per acre per annum at present.

Future forest development, therefore, largely depends upon actively involving our farming community in growing trees on farmland as a new cash crop. Surprisingly our farmers are already producing 9 times more fuel and 3 times more timber than state forests but they are not aware of the magnitude of their contribution. Another very important avenue for forest development lies in attracting talent, experience and capital for popularizing market oriented commercial forestry in Pakistan along river banks and canal banks.

The existing forest education and research system at PFI, Peshawar is inherited from Dera Dun, British India and is very strongly inflexible in its frame work and in being conservation oriented in nature. It has led us no where even after 50 yrs of our national life. We have not yet defined our targets and we have not yet developed a pragmatic strategy for the purpose. The products of the present system are typical bureaucrats, who can at their best only maintain status quo. They are neither trained nor have the vision for taking any revolutionary step or undertaking research on new lines, managing forests profitable or performing extension service efficiently.

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