Green Highways Policy

The Union government is all to unveil its Green Highways policy soon.

Details of the policy:

  • Under the policy, bushes and trees will be grown along all the highways in a phased manner.
  • The plan is to grow three layers of trees and bushes. The first will be of bushes so that if a vehicle goes off the road, it does not collide with something life-threatening. The second will be of medium-sized trees and the last will be of tall fruit trees. Only species indigenous to the area would be planted.

Purpose of this policy:

The purpose of this policy is to promote the greening of highway corridors with the participation of the local community, including local contractors and the local Forest Department. The latent objective was to generate employment.

Investment:

The investment in the project would be Rs. 1,000 crore this year. It is 1% of the Rs. 1,00,000-crore investment in national highway projects in the year.

Benefits of this policy:

  • The community will gain in terms of huge employment opportunities and entrepreneurship development
  • Huge environmental benefits are also associated with this policy.
  • The local community will get the rights to the non-timber produce from the trees.

Participation:

A wide cross-section of agencies would participate in the project. Those eligible include government or private companies, NGOs registered as societies, trusts or private limited non-profit companies, and producer organisations.

Targets:

The government has also laid down strict targets for the companies growing and maintaining trees. The minimum survival rate is 90%. Only after reaching this level will a company get the required money from the Ministry in the next year.

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