In a bid to protect the heritage trees around the banks of Thamirabarani River in Tirunelveli district that originates from the Agastyarkoodam peak of Pothigai hills of the Western Ghats, at the temples and public spots, District Collector Vishnu inaugurated the survey of trees in Nellai district. “The first phase would be to survey the trees in 153 100-year-old temples in the district, followed by the counting of trees in public places", the collector said.
Following the order issued by the Ministry of Forest, Environment and Meteorology on July 2 to ensure the protection of trees in public places across Tamil Nadu, a Green Committee has been formed at the State level and at the District level. Apparently, these groups will carry out activities such as protecting trees, regularizing afforestation and documenting the planting of trees where ever necessary.
In the meantime, the Tirunelveli district administration has started the task of enumerating trees in public spots in collaboration with voluntary organizations including the Forest Department and the Agathiyamalai People’s Natural Resource Conservation Center at Manittar. The inaugural function was held at the District Science Center at Nellai Kokirakulam in which the District Collector Vishnu inaugurated the tree counting process in the city. The event was attended by District Forest Officer, Science Center Officer and Agathiyamalai People’s Natural Resource Conservation Center Coordinator.
While addressing reporters, Collector Vishnu said, “a green committee has been set up in the district in accordance with the government’s order. Various efforts are being made through this, however, in particular, a digital mapping of water levels and tracing of the Thamirabarani river tracks is underway. This is followed by the survey of trees in public places. Currently, 30 volunteers have been involved in the work. The survey also looks at the biology, culture, age of the tree, species that live in the trees and the biodiversity", he added.