By Shiva Kumar Kashi, Hetauda, Apr. 12: While forest fires continue to rage around the country, the Division Forest Offices of Makwanpur are on high alert to save forest-borne products in the community forests of the districts.
Division Forest Office Rapti Manahari and Division Forest Office Hetauda have instructed the community forest consumer committees under their jurisdiction to do everything possible to save their wood from the fires.
According to Achyut Upadhyaya, assistant forest officer at the Division Forest Office, Hetauda, priority has been given to creating control lines. The office has also cleaned bushes to eliminate flammable materials. “Our aim is to prevent fire spreading to the stocked logs,” he said.
Similarly, assistant forest officers of the Division Forest Office Rapti Manahari have visited all the community forests in the office’s area and have monitored the construction of the fire control lines and bushes, informed Dirgha Narayan Koirala, head of the office.
“We are doing our best despite our limited resources,” Koirala said. He said that even though they have not achieved much success in controlling the wildfires, they had been working to protect the produced timber.
The Rapti Manahari office has around 100,000 cubic feet of timber stockpiled in various community forests. Likewise, the Hetauda office has 70,000 cubic feet of stored timber. The timber, cut and prepared, is stored in an allocated area within the forests. So, they are prone to destruction by wildfires.
“We have instructed the consumer committees to utilise and mobilise the necessary manpower to save the timber,” Assistant Forest Officer Upadhyaya added. “The resources will be managed from the forest development fund.”
The fires that have been burning in various community forests in Makwanpur for the past two weeks have adversely affected the environment and damaged forest products and animals.