High level of disparity in tree cover fading Nagpur’s glory as green city: Study

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 16 May 2017 10:50:17

By Kaushik Bhattacharya,

Green cover in Prabhag No 2, 6, 5, 20, 27, 28, 30, 32, 33, 38, 3, 4, 12, 24, 25, 26, 29 and 34 are very poor

Prabhag No 14 topping the list as heavy green cover with 40.1%

Urban green spaces are the most effective means of removing atmospheric pollution in big cities. Nagpur is known as one of the greenest city in India but there is high level of disparity in tree coverage than Chandigarh, Gandhinagar and Delhi which are more greener.

A study conducted by a local company named imaGIS revealed that some Prabhags in Nagpur city have very high level of tree canopy while some are poor in green coverage. “The purpose of the study was to achieve uniform greenery level within the city by adopting latest planning technologies like Remote Sensing, GIS etc,” said Sandeep Saikhedkar, Director, imaGIS.

He stated that the study was conducted around 220 sq km in all 38 Prabhags that comes under the jurisdiction of Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC). The total tree canopy spread within the city is 29.6 sq km which is just 13.5 per cent of total area. The study, in fact, sounds a wake-up call for Nagpurians in general and civic body in particular that a combined efforts are needed to increase the green cover. Given the drastic changes off late happening in atmosphere, now summer is far more harsh than previous years, planting and ensuring that trees survive can only balance the Nature’s forces.

According to the study, Prabhag No 14 which covers Raj Bhavan Campus, Sadar, Gandhi Chowk, Azad Chowk, NMC Head Office Campus, District Court, Vidarbha Cricket Association (VCA), Residence Road, Railway Club, Tirpude College, Gittikhadan (South), Japanese Garden, CPWD Quarters, Balodyan, Centre Point School, Ravi Nagar, Bharat Nagar, CP Club area, Telankhedi Campus, Futala, Tilak Nagar, University Campus, Ramgiri and High Court have very high level of tree canopy which is 40.1 per cent of Prabhag No 14.

This can be easily explained as the entire Civil Lines is dotted with dense tree cover and minimum population. That it happens to be seat of Government has ensured in protection of green cover. Also the green canopy of Seminary Hills ensures that this prabhag is the greenest and arguably most envy for residents of other parts of city.
But Prabhag No 4 which cover Kalamna Basti, Wanjra, Wanjri, Bharatwada and Kalamna Railway Station area have very poor green cover with only 2.2 per cent of the prabhag. These areas are arguably most backward in terms of economic development and here priority is more of earning daily livelihood that conserving trees.

Prabhag 10, 16 and 17 also have very high level of green cover while in Prabhag No 9, 11, 13, 15 and 36, green cover is good. There is average level of green cover in Prabhag No 1, 7, 8, 18, 19, 21, 22, 31, 35 and 37. But, the situation is worst in Prabhag No 2, 6, 5, 20, 27, 28, 30, 32, 33, 38, 3, 4, 12, 24, 25, 26, 29 and 34 which should be improved to maintain the position in the list of green city.

“To maintain the tag of green city, the administration shall be aimed to achieve uniform tree coverage at least 15 per cent. The areas with very poor greenery coverage shall be developed on immediate basis by the administration,” Saikhedkar explained.

He further said, “People of all categories, professions and age groups consider parks, gardens, urban forests as most effective means for stress-relieving and relaxation. Hence, every citizen should also contribute at their level to increase the green cover of their city by planting saplings at homes and maintain trees in their colonies.”