TURA, June 25 � The Centre for Environment Protection and Rural Development (CEPARD), an environment-based ngo is gearing up to educate the people in the Garo Hills region on protection of forests.
�We are in for the long haul if we continue to eat up forest resources at this rate. Something has to be done and we are looking forward to doing it�, said CEPARD president Samgar Sangma.
The dwindling resources along with the drying of ground water in the region, has been taking a toll on the health of the forests in the region. �We are currently on a stock taking exercise to see which parts of the region need the most attention. When reserve forests can be denuded and settlements come up there, that is definitely a cause for alarm�, said vice president Tangseng G Momin.
�The UN findings are an eye-opener. Ground water reserves have are drying up and loss of habitat has also affected many animals, some of which are on the brink of extinction. For us to reverse the trend may be difficult but we at least can put in an effort�, said Momin.
�Monoculture too has impacted soil quality. Everywhere in Garo Hills, acres upon acres of prime forest have been cleared to plant cash crops (rubber, betel nut). Studies have shown that monoculture is bad for the soil as well as the animals that were a part of the forest�, said Sangma.