As India joins rest of the world in celebrating World Forest Year this year , Kerala is all set to host a special forest festival from 6th of February. The five day festival will be inaugurated by Chief Minister V S Achuthanandan. Union Minister of Environment & Forests Jayaram Ramesh will be the chief guest and forest ministers and experts from southern states will be attending.

The lush green state of Kerala, widely appreciated for its rich biodiversity is also confronted with the stark reality of climate change in the form of unseasonal rainfall, flash flood and other frequent natural calamities. In this context the state government effort to organise the first ever forest festival of ministers and experts from the southern states is of considerable importance. It may be recalled that recently Kerala received special appreciation from United Nations Environment Programme for its social forestry programme of planting about 1.87core saplings across the state involving different segments of society mainly students. During the last five years, Kerala has declared close to 55,000 acres of land as reserved forests. Apart from cultural segments by tribal people, screening of world class documentaries on environment are some of the highlights of the five day long Kerala forest festival.

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