OF SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Government of Himachal Pradesh
This document is the result of participatory process involving
administrators, technocrats, professionals and citizens,
who have in the course of their work experience formulated
distinct impressions on the State of Environment of Himachal
main purpose of this document is to develop approaches
compatible with the mountain eco-systems and its unique
aspects such as fragility, inaccessibility, marginality,
diversity, climatic peculiarities, etc. The policy guidelines
cover important areas such as Land, Water, Air, Miniral
Resources, Health, Biodiversity, Agriculture, Horticulture,
Energy and Tourism etc.
is hoped that the implementation of Policy guidelines
will lead to the strengthening of the existing departmental
policies so that the developmental activities become not
only comprehensive but sustainable. While the Policy discourages
mindless exploiting of natural resources, it also encourages
the process of conservation and preservation. It would
be imperative to ensure the participation of all stakeholders
for successful implementation of these guidelines. I am
sure that all the concerned departments, institutions
and individuals will take appropriate action to achieve
environmental enhancement and sustainable development.
Deptt. of Science & Technology
1.1. Himachal Pradesh Government shall help to promote
the development of an economically and environmentally
sound eco-system while endeavoring to improve the living
standards of the people in the State. The Govt. is conscious
of the intrinsic value of the environment and of the ecological,
genetic, social, economic, scientific, educational, cultural,
recreational and aesthetic values thereof. Further, it
realizes the importance of environment for evolution and
for maintaining life sustaining systems.
The Govt. of H.P. expresses its resolve to conserve and
enhance the environment and follow a policy of sustainable
development. Being aware of its central role in forging
and directing the development on a sustainable matrix,
it calls upon people, Panchyati Raj and local bodies,
institutions, and the organs of the State for extending
their full co-operation in this effort.
2. THE AREAS OF ENVIRONMENTAL CONCERN
2.1 The term environment encompasses air, water, soil,
flora and fauna, communities, their habitats and livelihoods
etc. and is a complex mix of various inter relationships,
which these facets of environment have amongst one another.
Environment is generally considered in three broad classifications
- Natural, Built and Sociocultural and it is essential
to examine the effect of development activities on all
the three components. The concern today is not only preserving
these for the present generation but also ensuring 'its
use by our future generations.
2.2. The following characteristics and special features
of the State guide the identification of issues of environmental
v. Hostile climate
vi. Scattered population and small agricultural holdings
2.3. In the light of the above, the following areas have
been identified, which are of environmental significance
and need attention on a priority basis:
Construction of highways, massive buildings and big dams.
ii) Extension of orchards into environmentally sensitive
agricultural and forest lands.
iii) Destruction of forest cover.
iv) Deep Channel cutting for minerals and open cast mining
for building materials.
v) Pollution and garbage.
3. DEVELOPMENT IN HIMACHAL PRADESH
3.1.The fragile environment of the Himalayas has seen
developmental interventions, which are replication of
the development patterns of the plains. Himachal Pradesh
itself has undergone transformation from subsistence centered
agriculture to commercial horticulture based development.
The developmental path adopted in the last thirty years
has been a mixed success. While one can legitimately talk
with pride about a reasonably good road network, educational
and health institutions, problems in the shape of depleting
forests, increasing pressure on common property resources
such as water, pastures etc., deterioration in water and
air quality are a matter of concern. Overall, there is
a threat to the quality of life and this can hollow the
base for an economically sound and environmentally safe
future. The sensitivity of the State's geographical, geological
and cultural nature cannot be overemphasized today.
It is in the State's interest to rethink its approach
and strategy to development and the measures of economic
progress. The questions that would appear relevant are:
What is wrong?
ii) Where has it gone wrong?
iii) Are policies and programmes in consonance with the
natural systems of the State.?
iv) Have policies been implemented' in their correct perspective?
v) Have people's perceptions been built into the development
vi) What direction should' our policies take and what
do we hope to achieve by them?
4. NEED FOR POLICY
4.1. India was one of the first countries, where the Constitution
recognised the need for harmonizing environmental concerns
with development. Article 48A specifically directs, 'The
State shall endeavor to protect and improve the environment
and to safeguard the forests and wildlife in the country”
and Article 51A(g) enjoins upon Indian citizens a Fundamental
Duty “ to protect and improve the natural environment
including forests, lakes and rivers and wildlife, and
to have compassion for the living creatures.”
4.2. The National Conservation Strategy and the Policy
Statement on Environment and Development are in response
to the need for laying down the guidelines that will help
to weave environmental considerations into the fabric
of our national life and of our development process. It
is an expression of our commitment for reorienting policies
and action in unison with the environmental perspective.
At present, the State of Himachal Pradesh does not have
any Environmental Policy of its own. The developmental
vis-a-vis environmental model followed in the State is
generally directed by central policies and laws which
do not fully address the requirements and unique aspects
of mountain areas.
5. THE APPROACH
5.1. While recognising the fact that the legal regime
put in place by the Union and. State Govt. is sound, the
approach adopted in this policy document is to identify
issues and to prepare guidelines, which could lead to
formulation of an Environment Policy for the State of
Himachal Pradesh. The specific effort has been:
i) To identify issues which need immediate attention of
planners and policy makers for both spatial and sectoral
ii) To redefine indicative and operational roles for the
Government in ameliorative problem solving.
iii) To define policy frames and the implementation mechanism
for cohesive and coherent implementation.
iv) To identify the role of people in general & women
in particular in environment conservation, protection
6.1. The objective is to develop sustainable development
approaches in Himalayas, which take into account the special
features of mountains. Sustainable development means "meeting
the needs of present generation without compromising the
needs of future generations". From this definition,
the following principles of sustainable development emanate:
i) The Govt. and public perspective must shift towards
ecological consideration in development.
ii) Mindless exploitation of natural resources, which
are not renewable, must be stopped.
iii) State needs to conserve resources and use technologies,
which generate minimum waste.
7.1 The purpose of Environment Policy Guidelines for Himachal
Pradesh is two fold:
Taking stock as it were of the development process pursued
- its gains and its pitfalls.
ii) Identification of remedies and interventions as may
be required at Institutional, Regulatory and ultimately
policy and implementation levels.
7.2 The Policy Guidelines comprise parts covering subjects
of land use, Geology, Forest, Agriculture, Horticulture,
Water Resources, Industries, Energy,. Tourism, Health,
Biodiversity and Pollution in relation to the environment
and action required in each area. The present status of
each sector including its environmental concerns has been
Himachal being a small, hilly State needs not only to
develop its resources of land, water etc., but also make
development humane, ecologically friendly and sustainable.
Presently most departments have their own policies Industrial,
Mining, Forest, Tourism, Power etc. All these policies
have certain safeguards/regulations inbuilt in them to
cover ecological issues. Through this document, the endeavour
is that the guidelines are considered and adopted by the
Govt. departments to make their policies and activities
more ecologically sound and better regulated, so that
the existing lacunae could be plugged and the present
developmental process improved upon to sustain itself
and ecology. Such a development strategy would ensure
a better ecological assessment of projects/schemes, better
coordination and as a end result, a better and safer life
for the people of the State.
It is important to recall at this stage that the environmental
disturbances are quite often caused due to pressures of
social or economic expediency. Man does not possess original
blue prints of Nature, therefore, it would be necessary
to realise that any action, in order to be ecologically
sound, must have foundations on cool and detailed evaluation
of competing options and parameters. In a situation of
complexities arising out of technological, social and
economic variables, it would be necessary to always have
a structured approach while dealing with environment related
issues and evaluations. For this, step by-step approach
as indicated below should be followed, in the sequence
in which it is mentioned:
ii) Social, including political, parameters
iii) Cost and economic parameters.
iv) Over-all reasonability parameters.
8. SECTORAL GUIDELINES:
8.1. The sectoral guidelines, as described here-in-after
have emerged from State's Environmental Status Report. The
choice of sectors has been influenced by concerns which
are important not only for making developmental activities
durable and sustainable but also by a core concern to minimise
damage in such area of Govt. and human activities as are
of core concern for the preservation of biosphere. While
the rationale for prescribing these sectoral guidelines
is sufficiently explained in Para-I of the policy guidelines,
it is necessary to clarify here that the sectoral guidelines
should be adopted and followed by all so as to make the
process of sectoral planning more sensitive to the needs
of environmental sustenance of enhancement.
All government departments should start addressing the
action points immediately through their plans.
As a necessary run-up to serve the objectives and sectoral
guidelines given in this policy, it will be essential
to suitably augment skills of state's human resource.
Government departments should reappraise the current nature
of their operations to see how they offer offence to environment.
The departments should also appreciate as to how their
existing work processes be modified to make them environmentally
sensitive. Such an exercise ought to be followed by an
appropriate revision of technical prescriptions and procedures.
Alongside, the training needs necessary to have new orientation
should also be suitably prescribed. Keeping their mandated
tasks and objectives of this policy in view, some departments
may feel the need to set up environment cells consisting
of suitably trained personnel.
8.A. LAND USE:
8.A.1. Land is the prime resource of the State. The availability
of land in per capita term is comfortable. Yet, current
pattern of land use is marked by fragmented and isolated
departmental approaches. There is a need to have an integrated
approach for land use optimisation in the State for sustaining
and improving food production, horticulture development,
animal husbandry and forestry. To achieve this objective,
adoption of micro-water shed principle is extremely important.
Disturbances to the land surface, as necessary for executing
private and public developmental works, have necessarily
to be followed by appropriate restoration. This calls
for a sustained inter-sectoral coordination among various
8.A.3. ISSUES OF CONCERN:
a. 21,648 Sq. Km. i.e. 38.9% of the area remains unsurveyed.
b. Prevalence of feeling among the village communities
that maintenance, preservation and regeneration of forests
which are in their village common lands is only the State
c. Lack of policy of proper management of the wastelands
and common property resources.
d. Lack of proper policy for extraction of forest produce
which lead to the problem of soil erosion.
e. Encroachments on the forest land.
f. Shifting the management of the common lands from the
society to the state has culminated into diminishing the
involvement of the people at large in the management of
g. Lack of methodology for recording and ascertaining
the actual production of fruit crops and hence lack of
proper production estimates.
h. The land use data thrown up by the annual season and
crop reports also lacks sufficient credibility in view
of the fact that neither have the changes in land use
been recorded properly nor have the changes relating to
irrigation status and shifts in cropping pattern been
brought on record. Apart from the infirmities of land
use details, this shortcoming also constraints the estimation
of state domesting product.
i. A variety of settlement operations are going on which
need to be brought under unified system of doing the work
on record of rights.
8.A.4. ACTION REQUIRED:
Survey of the remaining unsurveyed area i.e. 39% should
be done and brought on revenue record.
2. Change in the traditional mode of livelihood of grazers
by helping them to adopt new agro-economic activities
such as off season vegetables, horticultural crops, floriculture
3. Provision of a suitable legislation so that village
communities which are found ignorant of their obligations
towards upkeep and protection of forests would be deprived
of their rights on forests.
4. Coordination and strict monitoring of the demarcation
programme for proper management of the wastelands.
5. To control soil erosion, through adequate engineering
and vegetative measures.
6. Encroachments on the forest land must be expeditiously
dealt with the removed.
7. Strict implementation of provision of H.P. Land Preservation
Act, 1978 and the Forest Conservation Act, 1980.
8. Need to identify the extent of under utilisation of
irrigation base to ensure the optimum utilisation and
to augment the irrigation base substantially.
9. Rejuvenation of land use Board so that proper land
use plans are made and implementation of guidelines by
various depts. is ensured.
10. Village societies should be motivated to actively
participate in the preservation and regeneration of common
11. Specific schemes should be formulated so that area
under cultivable wasteland can be reclaimed.
12. Need to formulate methodology for recording and ascertaining
the actual production of fruit crops.
8.B GEOLOGY AND MINING:
8.B.1. Fragility of rock structure, forest cover, surface
slopes, drainage systems and inadequacy of soil cover
are key factors to be borne in mind while mitigating environmental
repercussions in mining and quarrying operations.
8.B.2 ISSUES OF CONCERN:
a. Land damage, landslides, flow of waste material and
b. Deforestation and visual pollution.
c. Damage to flora and fauna.
d. Water pollution and disturbance of the water regime.
e. Air pollution.
f. Noise pollution & vibrations.
g. Human displacement and social problems.
h. Extraction of land, stone and grit from nalla and river
beds have different environmental impacts. Haphazard extraction
leads to erosion of banks and flooding.
i. Though the mining leases are understood to have given
approval, yet the experience shows that rehabilitation
plans are not implemented. Towards ensuring this, it is
necessary to set apart a corpus out of the total project
cost of mining for the rehabilitation effort and take
this money as an advance before granting the mining lease.
This deposit could be considered as a security which could
be forfeited in the event of the mining leasee not implementing
the rehabilitation programme to the satisfaction of the
8.C.1. Forests are a basic ecological and natural resource.
They constitute the essential life support system besides
being a source of timber, fuel, fodder and medicines etc.
They ought to be recognised as water reservoirs, natural
source of soil nutrition, soil creators and soil binders.
There is a natural need, therefore, to create public stakes
and to involve communities in the development, conservation
and scientific exploitation of forests and all lands classified
as forests. In Himachal unlimited scope exists for intensification
and diversification of forest cover.
The total area of Himachal Pradesh is 55,6773 sq. km.
out of this, 66.43% of the area of the state is legally
defined as forest land. Actually, out of this 36,84% of
the area is pasture/alpine land or above tree line where
no conventional timber forest can generally be grown.
Therefore, we have only 29.5% of the area where there
can be conventional forests. Out of this, only 22.49%
is under tree cover. As per National Forest Policy, the
forest cover in hilly areas should be 66%, whereas the
actual forest cover is only 22.49%. Therefore, a massive
afforestation programme is needed to achieve 29.5% which
is the maximum possible in Himachal pradesh, ecologically
within the legal forest area.
8.C.4. ISSUES OF CONCERN:
a. Forest cover and forest depletion areas assessment.
b. Choice of the afforestation species.
c. Regulation of minor forest produce and TD rights.
d. Collective management of natural resources.
e. Grassland and pasture management practices.
f. Review of protected area network (Sanctuaries and National
g. There is an urgent need for taking a realistic view
on what area can be effectively forested. The policy prescription
under the National forest Policy of 66% or of State policy
at 50% seem to be unrealistic.
8.C.5. ACTION REQUIRED:
Under the National Forest Policy norms, there is an immediate
need to bring the remaining portion of the optimum forest
are under tree cover.
2. Critical evaluation and appraisal of existing programmes
of afforestation and deriving meaningful path finders
from such evaluation.
3. Development of plantation models that meet the needs
of the people and the edaphic exactness of species.
4. Identification of policies that lead to the degradation
of forest resources and the conversion of forest ecosystem
to other less valuable uses.
5. Training of forest officials at all levels for achieving
developmental and participatory management orientation
for mutating of the existing regulatory mind set.
6. Patronage of Panchayats, NGOs, Mahila Mandals and Voluntary
Agencies in afforstation programmes. The allocation of
plantation targets to these agencies will expedite the
7. 36.84% of the forest area is situated above tree line
and cannot be put under tree cover. Yet this area is the
repository of very valuable resources. Inventory and assessment
of the resources of the Alpine Zone needs to be taken
on highest priority to initiate strategies for enhancing
land use of this vast area based on the kind of vegetation
that could be grown in this zone.
8. Assessment of forest fire damage and inventory of the
appropriate technology/methodology for prevention and
9. Popularization and expansion of the programme on the
use of non conventional energy sources, improved chullahs,
use of Solar Energy Systems, biogas, use of LPG and Kerosene
oil as a special drive in villages falling in five km.
belt around the forest.
10. Assessment of the impact of over grazing of cattle
and identification of solution.
11.Timely regeneration efforts for certain plant varieties
like the chilgoza pine which is of immense social forestry
12. To compensate TD rights with raising some or more
number of trees and make it mandatory that every TD right
holder plants new trees.
13. Encourage people participation and formulation of
appropriate extension strategies for high rate survival
success of afforestation programmes.
14 .Checking the erosion of genetic diversity by laying
more emphasis on the biosphere reserves, establishing
demonstration plots and resource inventory of medicinal
15. Making cultivation and proliferation of medicinal
and aromatic plant species a prominent choice under Participatory
Forest Management efforts in the State.
16. Check on the indiscriminate lopping and removal of
17. Preparation of comprehensive and timely Forest working
plants with the involvement of people.
18. Improvement in the technology of road construction,
mining and other developmental technologies in the forest
19. Proper coordination between the Animal husbandry and
Forest deptt. for the conservation of pasture lands.
8.D. WILD LIFE CONSERVATION:
8.D.1. Wild life conservation is a function of natural
habitat protection. Wild life conservation will receive
boost once our ecological management improves and communities
are sensitized towards the protection of natural habitats.
Communities can and should pay active and useful rile
The existing network of Protected Areas (PA) has 32 wildlife
sanctuaries (5664 sq. kms.) and 2 National Parks (1440
sq.kms.) covering a total geographical area of 7031 sq.
kms. The management of a protected area is done through
Management plan prepared by a planning officer. New Management
plans need to be prepared in view of the new approach
to PA management and biodiversity conservation.
1. Fragmented sanctuaries require a clear policy.
2. Encasement of wildlife personnel and their trading
with emphasis on species inventory and management.
3. Research and documentation. Expansion of the data base
of protected areas. Preparation of species inventories
and vegetation maps for the PA Network in Himachal Pradesh.
4. Total protected area in Himachal Pradesh be raised
to at least 20% of its geographical area after a review
5. Status of "Sacred Groves" to be maintained
6. Participation of the local people and other stake holders
in PA management planning, mainly eco development and
7. Integration of PA concerns into eco development and
establish mechanisms to integrate PA concerns into regional
8. Need to formulate a clear cut policy on crop damage
by the wild animals.
9. Linking wildlife research to the wildlife conservation.
8.E.1. In H.P. out of 55.7 lac hectare area, only 6.21
lac hactare is under cultivation i.e. only 11% is under
cultivation. Out of this, 3.35 lac hectares can be irrigated
but only 50% of this area is being irrigated and rest
is rain fed. Presently, the total food grain production
is 14 lac tonnes which is not sufficient.
The strategy of Agriculture production has to be oriented
towards productivity enhancement and production diversification
through eco-friendly methods.
8.E.3. ACTION REQUIRED:
Emphasis on formulation of a strategy to discourage the
use of pesticides and chemical fertilizers by popularizing
and demonstrating the use of bio fertilizers and biopesticides.
2. Documentation of traditional agriculture practices
and cropping pattern which were based on low input system.
3. Initiate steps to increase the areas under irrigation
by adopting rainwater harvesting practices and by developing
other irrigation facilities.
4. Identification and documentation of traditional food
crops and creating awareness regarding their food value.
5. Check on expansion of urbanisation and industries on
prime agricultural land.
6. Increase in production per unit area.
7. Promotion of agroforestry with local people's participation.
8. Promotion of cultivation on the basis of watershed
9. Promote dry land farming.
10. Himachal Pradesh has a lot of potential for commercial
crops like potato (Production 32,000 tonnes) and off season
vegetables. Therefore, this should be further promoted
and making linkages should de developed.
8.F.1. H.P. has done commendable work in the field of
horticulture. Presently, the production of various fruits
is 4.6 lac tonnes. Out of this, major share is apple which
is nearly 3.3 lac tonnes. Another area of concern is that
the production of apple in 57,450 hectares in 3.3. lac
tonnes which is 5.6. tonnes per ha. It is only 1/4 of
the world average.
Horticultural production has to endeavour towards intensification
of production and diversification of production through
eco-friendly methods. Horticulture operations are pre-eminetly
suited to Himachal's topography and needs new initiatives
to fill existing gaps in the variatal coverage. Horticulture
should pay specific attention to bring medicinal and aromatic
plants under the fold of their field activities on private
8.F.3. ACTION REQUIRED:
Horticulture has to be made more profitable and economically
sustainable by diversification of production in traditional
horticultural developed areas of the State and intensification
of horticulture in remaining areas of the State.
2. Documentation, evaluation and identification of nutritional
and medicinal values in Horticultural produce and the
fruit processing technologies to be propagated in small
scale units markets. Training programmes through extension
services by various departments, universities and NGOs.
3. Identification and formulation of viable packaging
4. Evolving a strategy for improving per hectare production
of commercial fruit crops, like apple and citrus fruits
which at present is less than the world average.
5. To educate growers about other varieties of fruit viz,
Kiwi, Strawberries, grapes etc.
6. To improve and popularise grass, floriculture and other
traditional herbal plants.
7. To identify and promote the use of environment friendly
pesticides and fertilizers.
8. Check on the expansion of horticulture at the cost
of forest resources.
9. Encouraging horticulture in available cultivatable
10. Need for undertaking meteorological studies in horticulture.
11. Introduction of plant biotechnology for the improvement
12. Developing suitable varieties of plant which can be
grown in could desert areas.
13. Much more research in necessary to evolve better quality,
hybrid and environmental friendly varieties of stone fruits/kernel
fruits and their processing.
8.G. WATER RESOURCES:
8.G.1. Hydrological sustainability is a big challenge.
Conservation and judicious use of water resources is a
complex task for the Govt. as the population increases
and the demand for water to support modern life style
increases. Taking urgent action to increase availability
of potable water would be necessary. Simultaneously, there
is a need for re-cycling water, to the extent possible,
besides developing systems of economical and cyclic water
use. There is a need to generate a citizens movement for
Judicious management and conservation of the water resources
is required in the State to augment the water based irrigation
and hydel power generating capacity.
8.G.3. As far as irrigation activity is concerned, there
is a massive gap in the potential created and area effectively
irrigated. Also, the irrigation methodologies being propagated
are water intensive leading to enormous wastage and there
is a need for appropriate innovations for introducing
water conserving technologies for irrigation. As regards
water for drinking, the quality of water supply leaves
much to be desired and there are several instances of
dangerous contaminants being emptied into river system
leading to degeneration of water quality and environment
as well as damage to the fauna systems in the rivers.
8.G.4. ACTION REQUIRED:
Implementation of the Rain Water Harvesting Guidelines
in Urban and Rural areas of the State to enhance the conservation
of water resources.
2. Efficient use of drinking water resources.
3. Preparation for guidelines for impact assessment of
water resources development projects with specific reference
to hill areas is to be taken up on the highest priority.
4. Preparation of inventory of traditional drinking water
sources and assessment of their utilizable status needs
to be taken up.
5. Rehabilitation strategy for the traditional sources
needs to be worked out on a priority basis.
6. Generation of base line water quality data around industrial
belts and identification of contamination level and their
impact on riverine ecosystems.
7. Conjunctive utilization of surface and ground water
resources for proper functioning of drinking water supply
8. Collection of Hydrological and Hydro geological data
for the exploration of surface and ground water resources.
9. Development of ground water resources in the various
water supply schemes, identified as pilot projects in
the drought hit areas.
10. More priority for drinking water in comparison to
its use of commercial or agricultural purposes. Augmentation
of source where there is scarcity of water to supply at
least 120 LPCD in urban towns.
11. The distribution network should be simultaneously
relaid, augmented, extended and remodelled wherever necessary.
12. Proper monitoring of surface and ground water quality.
13. Participation of local people in various irrigation
14. Regular chlorination of drinking water supply is mandatory.
Water supply should be regularly monitored for any contamination.
15. All towns located on the banks of river or rivulets
should have sewage treatment plants and should not be
allowed to discharge the urban waste without treatment
into or on the banks of rivers.
16. Various hotels and tourists resorts coming up on the
banks of rivers must have proper sewage treatment plants.
17. No industrial units should bee allowed to discharge
untreated effluents into rivers/khads/nallahs.
8.H. CONSERVATION OF WETLANDS:
8.H.1 Himachal pradesh encompasses a wide variety of natural
and man made water systems. These lakes or wetlands are
spread in the various ecological zones, from the sub-tropical
to trans-Himalayan regions, ranging from 400 to 5000 m.
in altitude. Due to their location, these wetlands support
unique biological diversity.
Wetlands occupy 1% of the total geographical area in he
State. The total number of wetlands (>2 ha.) in the
State of Himachal Pradesh are 92, out of which 7 are man
made and remaining 85 are natural.
The area of 85 natural wetlands is 1555.75 ha. and the
areas of 7 man made wetlands is 53210.25 ha. The total
area under wetland is 54766 ha. during the post monsoon
season and 30366 ha. during the pre monsoon period. In
addition, there are 176 wetlands smaller than 2.25 ha.
Out of these, 3 lakes have been identified as Wetlands
of National Importance by the Ministry of Environment
and Forests, Govt. of India, viz. Renuka, Chandertal &
Pong Dam lake. The conservation problems being faced by
most of these lakes are related to increased siltation
in their catchments areas and eutrophication leading to
weed growth, because of excessive nutrient influx into
8.H.5. ACTION REQUIRED:
Regular study of physiochemical parameters.
2. Need to undertake bathymetric mapping of wetlands.
3. Reduction of sediment influx.
4. Increase in optimum biological productivity for fishing,
so that local fisherman secure greater benefits.
5. Inventory of the biodiversity of the lakes and other
6. Development of strategy for the protection and conservation
of these lakes their catchments.
7. Development of these water bodies as tourist spots
with adequate ecological protection.
8. Need to set up a Coordinating body for all wetlands/lakes.
9. Catchments area treatment, weed removal and wetland
monitoring studies need to be taken up.
8.I. GRAZING LANDS AND PASTURES:
8.I.1. In Himachal Pradesh 17.6% of the geographical area
is under permanent pasture or grazing lands. The livestock
population of the state is three times the carrying capacity
of grazing lands. This is causing soil erosion and great
damage to the natural plantation.
In H.P. the live stock is 53 lacs and the fodder required
is 43 lac tonnes (green) and 40 lac tonnes (dry), but
only 16 and 30 lac tonnes is available respectively (only
0.18 ha. is available to sustain one livestock unit whereas
0.5 ha. is required).
8.I.3. ISSUE OF CONCERN:
a. Low productivity of pasture.
b. Less area under cultivated fodder.
c. Lack of desirable composition of grasses and legume
in grazing lands.
d. Lack of people participation in grazing land management.
8.I.4. ACTION REQUIRED:
1. Live Stock Management through shift in practice of
free grazing by livestock to stall feeding.
2. Grazing land management through deferred and rotational
3. Need to develop close coordination between the State
Forest Development and Animal Husbandry Deptt. for management
and development of pasture lands.
4. Introduction of desirable composition of grasses, legumes
and fodder trees which are palatable and high in protein
5. Enhancement and restoration of soil fertility with
the application for organic manure and biofertilizers.
6. Need to control weed and scrub growth invasive species.
7. Fodder development through People's Participation in
grazing land and livestock management.
8.J.1. Out of total 45,000 plant species found in the
country, as many as 3245 species (7.32%) are reported
in the State of Himachal Pradesh. The faunal diversity
of Himachal Pradesh has been largely influenced by its
unique geographical position. So far about 77,450 species
of animal area are known from India, of which Himachal
Pradesh harbours 5,721; amounting to about 7.4% in Indian
fauna This shows richness of faunal resources of the State
considering its small geographical area which is only
about 1.7% of the country. Invertebrates constitute 88.4%
[5,055 species] and vertebrates 11.6% [666 species] of
the Himachal Fauna. Insects and other Arthropods from
predominant group [464 species] among Invertebrates, whereas
vertebrates are dominated by birds comprising 447 species.
8.J.2. ACTION REQUIRED:
1. Simple and participatory monitoring methods are required
to be developed for field testing in diverse locations
for the assessment of biodiversity, to begin with in the
forestry and wildlife sectors.
2. Recognition to the innovative farmers, indigenous communities
of biodiversity of their own survival.
3. Need to undertake ethno-botanical research in universities.
4. Management of medicinal and aromatic plants and to
popularize their cultivation for economic growth.
5. Extension of research in medicinal and aromatic plants,
pharmaceutical knowledge and other Ayurvedic programmes.
6. Prevention of genetic material of superior trees by
clonal propagation in seed orchards in vitro gene banks.
7. Maintenance of in situ gene sanctuaries and arboreta
in different agro climatic zones.
8. Provisions for researches in forest preservation plots.
9. Need to make management and protection of sacred groves
10. Establishment of nodal agencies for cultivation, collection,
extraction and utilization of the herbal resources.
11. Need to undertake population studies of majority of
invertebrates e.g. earthworms, nematodes, protozoans,
12. Creation of biosphere reserves to conserve the genetic
stock of endangered species.
13. Public awareness about benefits and importance of
14. Setting up selective pilot projects for restoration
15. Evaluation of current status of endangered species.
16. Delineation of protected areas based on biodiversity
17. Immediate utilization of Biotechnology [Tissue Culture]
for Biodiversity and plant species propagation especially
by the Forest Department, in view of advantages in terms
of time, cost and genetic purity.
8.K. ANIMAL HUSBANDRY:
8.K.1. The total livestock population of about 53 lacs
in Himachal is contributed by 42.24% cattle, 13.76% buffaloes,
21.09% sheep, 21.90% goats, 0.74% equines, 0.14% pigs,
0.11% yaks and also 6.64 lac poultry. This constitutes
1.19% of the country's total livestock and 0.26% of the
8.K.2. In view of the limited carrying capacity of the
pastures and grazing land stock, it is necessary that
upgradation programme should be made the highest priority
in this sector.- More emphasis should be given on improving
the breed of cows through a well organised system of providing
artificial insemination facilities or by providing high
quality bulls to the communities.
8.K.3. Since goats are voracious grazers, it is necessary
that our policies should concentrate on replacing goats
with improved breeds of sheep which will lead to lesser
denudation of pastures etc. and also provide possibilities
of higher income.
8.K.4. ISSUE OF CONCERN:
a. Overgrazing- the incidence is 0.19 hectares per livestock
unit as against 0.5 hectares which is recommended.
b. Loss of grass cover leads to erosion and the pasture
8.K.5. ACTION REQUIRED:
1. To maintain the livestock number, steps are needed
to reduce losses by mortality and morbidity.
2. Improvement in production through better utilization
of available feed resources.
3. Reduction in the incidence of infectious diseases and
4. Adoption of more intensive livestock production system.
8.L. WOMEN AND ENVIRONMENT:
8.L.1. WOMEN AS PROTECTORS AND MANAGERS OF OUR NATURAL
8.L.2. Women's work concerns three main areas all crucial
to keeping the farming and at the larger level the rural
economy alive. There are:
a. Survival tasks- growing food crops, providing water,
gathering fuel and performing other work that sustain
b. Household tasks-cooking- that have to be done every
day. Rural women are ofter culturally required to be last
in the family to eat more or less the left over the other
c. Income generation- food processing, trading of agricultural
products, production of handicrafts. Women also spend
more of their income on family welfare in addition.
8.L.3. ACTION REQUIRED:
1. Need to create alternate income generating avenues
for women e.g. post harvest management, floriculture,
mushroom production, apiculture etc.
2. Need to undertake evaluation of programmes for women
to ensure that tokenism is avoided.
3. Need to focus attention on simplifying access to credit
by farm women.
4. Strengthening of women's organisation/groups [mahila
mandals] involved in environmental action.
5. Need to ensure strict implementation of provisions
that favour women.
8.M.1. Morbidity and mortality profile of population shows
that communicable disease constitute a predominant and
formidable health problem in the state. The very factors
responsible for most of the morbidity and mortality profile
in H.P. emerge out the development on various fronts like
urbanisation, agriculture, horticulture, industrialization
etc. It is further compounded with the lack of awareness
and sanitation facilities, low socioeconomic status, scant
regard for local bye-laws etc.
8.M.2. ACTION REQUIRED:
1. All towns should be covered with planned sewerage system
in a phased manner. Priority of course, has to be given
to those towns having more tourist influx, increased population
and prevalence of waterborne disease.
2. There should be proper information, education and communication
(IEC) strategy to bring about a 'desired behavioural change'
among service users regarding water handling and sanitation
3. Vehicular pollution need to be controlled seriously
and vigorously, particularly in the bus stands and near
4. Need to ban burning of coal (Bukharies) in Govt. office
for warming in winters.
5. Need to follow strictly anti-smoking instructions.
6. Proper surveys need to be conducted to find out the
magnitude of health problem in rural areas, due to handling
of domestic animal and natural manure.
7. Depending upon the local problems and requirements
regarding handling of chemicals specific IEC strategy
needs to be planned and implemented.
8. Each industrial area should have a health institution
to provide medical facilities to workers and their families
as envisaged under the ESI Act, 1948.
9. The Factories Act 1948, provides elaborate measures
for ensuring health, safety and welfare of workers. The
State Govt. should ensure proper implementation of these
measures through the appointment of Safety Officers in
8.N.1. The judicious use and choice in sourcing energy
is a core concern to the environmentalists. Himachal is
fortunate in having a vast potential for Hydro electricity
which when exploited will give this state a comfortable
per capita energy availability and also leave surpluses
for sale. Yet a lot can be done to exploit its non-conventional
sources and technologies like solar passive housing etc.
The burden on forest wealth of supplying fuel-wood can
be reduced if available alternatives are effectively propagated
Out of the total hydro-electric potential of 97000 MW
in the country, nearly 32% lies in Northern Region. Out
of this, as much as 21229 MW lies in Himachal Pradesh
only; in its five river basins of Yamuna, Sutlej, Beas,
Ravi, and Chenab where various hydel schemes of different
installed capacities have been identified.
Out of above, 3974.74 MW already stands harnessed by various
Central and State Govt. agencies. The state has also achieved
100% electrification and now the emphasis has shifted
to "run of the river type" hydel projects in
place of large storage dams.
8.N.4. ACTION REQUIRED:
1. To give boost to micro/mini hydel power schemes, Govt.
already has a policy to give incentives for setting up
of such schemes.
2. Renovation, modernization and upgradation of existing
power houses to improve performance and efficiency is
an ongoing process.
3. There is not much scope for harnessing wind and geothermal
energy. Incentives are available for harnessing solar
energy (both solar thermal and solar photovoltaic).
4. The T&D looses are of the order of about 18% in
H.P. and are one of the lowest in the country. Further
improvement in this requires investment.
5. Although there is a programme for replacing the traditional
gharats by the improved ones, the improved gharats have
not been used for power generation since the state attained
100% electrification about 10 years back.
6. Incorporation of necessary compensatory measures such
as provision for separate drinking water, irrigation arrangements,
plantation, soil conservation, environment and ecology
conservation at the time of formulation of DPRs of Hydel
schemes and execution of such components especially in
the area of plantation and soil conservation in the Project
mode by the Project Authorities needs to be ensured.
7. Environmental and forest clearance should be insisted
upon at the time of techno-economic clearance of the scheme
by the competent authority.
8. For popularization of non conventional sources of energy,
the appropriate quantum of subsidy under different programmes
needs to be looked into to ensure that the subsidy amount
is commensurate with the gains in terms of conservation
of forests, protection of environment/ecology etc.
9. Implementation of Solar Passive Building Technology
in the State.
8.O. INDUSTRIAL DEPARTMENT:
8.O.1. With the infrastructural development, and implied
industrial emphasis in the State plans, the number of
registered industrial units has shown a sizable increase.
The number of registered factories increased from the
mere 3 in 1951 to 598 in 1981 and 1401 in 1993 H.P. Industrial
Policy 1996, signals the State Government's commitment
to rapid industrializaiton by creating an investor friendly
climate by eliminating necessary delay and unwanted regulations.
The State Government would focus on development of infrastructure
and setting up of basic industries based on comparative
8.O.2. ACTION REQUIRED:
1. Creation of dense vegetation buffer around cement plants
and other industries so that pollutant practices are restricted
to go beyond the certain limit.
2. Assessment of Impact of Industrial emissions and pollutants
on human and cattle health and also on agriculture. Need
to take appropriate steps to maintain pollution control
standards to conserve climatological and pollution free
industrial environment of the State.
3. Provision of incentives for ecofriendly industries.
Inclusion of small scale industries of environmental clearance.
4. Standardise the guidelines of the Ministry of Environment
and Forests and set up procedures at the State Level for
scrutinizing the projects.
5. Identify agencies which are capable of carrying out
EIA studies in the State.
8.P. ARCHAEOLOGY AND CULTURE:
8.P.1. The vast growth of human and cattle population,
over utilization of resources, establishment of various
hydel projects, cement plants, construction of roads and
augmentaion of development projects, setting up of new
colonies and encroachment in geophysical situations has
taken place without taking proper steps to safeguard the
archaeological heritage of the State. Resultantly the
available cultural harmony prevailing among the communities
is exposed to undue stress. The need is to reasonably
conserve the cultural heritage and also to protect the
8.P.2. ACTION REQUIRED:
1. Need for proper guidelines to safeguard cultural heritage.
2. The fossil wealth found in the areas of watershed of
various rivers and rivulets requires to be handled carefully.
3. The ancient monuments, monasteries and shrines need
to be protected under definite plans to avoid environmental
degradation due to human interference and climatic vagaries.
4. Revitalization of eco-friendly, cost effective and
local specific traditional hilly architectural styles
5. Need for blending traditional technologies and modern
materials for better results.
6. Promotion of traditional system of medicines as a primary
7. Involvement of local artisans and traditional knowledgeable
persons for the designing and construction of various
8. To study the extreme richness of biodiversity as well
as the spatial diversity of ecological zones.
9. To study and document the symbiotic linkages that has
existed between community and nature. Need for adequate
marketing systems and value addition of local products
through promotion of cottage industries. Protection of
indigenous knowledge to be ensured through intellectual
8.Q.1. Himachal Pradesh has been a traditional tourist
destination. This fact has its root in the environmental
features of the State. Tourism has also been a major developmental
thrust area of the State. While sustenance and enhancement
of the Environment is a major input for the growth of
Tourism in the State, it would be advantageous to guide
the tourism development efforts for greater community
participation of and benefit sharing by the people in
order to enhance sustainability.
8.Q.2. ACTION REQUIRED:
1. Need to develop new circuits and destinations in the
State off load the burden of tourist flow.
2. Promotion of paying guest houses in the farm houses,
orchards, tea gardens and other scenic locations.
3. Ample forest cover, rich fauna and flora, established
wild life sanctuaries and parks, camping areas and nature
treks are already available. Thus it is more viable to
promote eco-tourism in the State.
4. Promotion of adventure tourism e.g. skiing, water sports,
hang gliding and para gliding and helisking.
5. Use of mass media for environment awareness among the
6. Appropriate architectural design of the tourist facilities
should be laid in accordance with local culture and the
8.R. SOLID WASTE AND GARBAGE MANAGEMENT:
8.R.1. There is a need for new systems, new technology
and new work approach in this area. This is a challenge
that local bodies and Panchayats must gear up to because
in times to come per capita garbage generation is bound
to increase and with increasing population garbage and
Solid Waste Management can pose problems unless timely
initiatives are taken.
8.R.2. With the increase in per capita generation of Solid
waste and also a corresponding change in the type of garbage
(from biodegradable to non-biodegradable and biomedical
waste), Solid Waste Management is emerging as the focal
area under environmental conversation and also for improving
the quality of live in tribal, temperature and subtropical
regions of the State.
8.R.3. H.P. NON-BIODEGRADABLE GARBAGE [CONTROL]
ACT 1995 AND RULES 1996:
Himachal Pradesh is the first State in the Country to
have enacted an Act for dealing with solid waste management
and the menace of coloured recycled plastic carry bags.
8.R.4. ACTION REQUIRED:
1. Waste Survey and Mapping of the towns. This involves
participatory survey of garbage collection, transportation
and disposal system with the formal and non-formal sectors
to develop Waste Management Plan in each locality/ward.
2. Segregation of biodegradable, non-biodegradable and
biomedical waste at source.
3. Provision of paper recycling and plastic bags reusing.
4. Composting of biodegradable components of the waste
into organic manure through aerotic composting, microbial
conversion and vermiculture through research and development
and Technology assessment.
5. Suitable disposal of Hospital [biomedical and clinic
waste] through incineration or other methods.
6. Information, Education and Communication campaign to
create awareness among policy makers, planners, field
staff, NGO's and general public.
7. Effective envorcement of HP and Central Acts H.P. Non-Biodegradable
Garbage [Control] Act, 1995 and Bio medical Waste Rules,
8. Training of Urban Local Bodies staff in waste management,
including collection, transportation and disposal.
8.S.1. Himachal Pradesh is basically a rural state 90%
of the population resides in the villages. Secondly there
are nearly 19,000 villages which reflect that population
is scattered all over the state. The total population
of Himachal Pradesh is 51 lacs, out of which 45 lacs reside
in the rural area. With an average family size of 5 there
are 9 lacs families in the rural areas.
8.S.2. Following are the main causes of river pollution:
a. Human waste: Absence of planned sewerage and garbage
b. Animal Wastes: Generated by 45 lac livestock units.
c. Agriculture and horticulture based pesticide and fertilizer
effluents flowing into water.
d. Industrial waste.
8.S.3. Because of the above pollutants the water in most
of the rivers is not potable and has potential in spread
8.S.4. Pollution prevention and control should be the
mandatory concern of the Govt., social institutions and
the people. To begin with Deptts. of the Govt. and its
Institutions can be made responsible for environment conservation/enhancement
and prevention and precautions related to pollution in
their respective spheres of activity.
8.S.5. The State Environment Protection and Pollution
Control Board has played role primarily as an environmental
police. This ought to be and can be corrected in such
a manner that this Board says a more wide, dynamic developmental
and guiding role as it being done in some developed countries.
This will be a very viable and effective mechanism whereby
the clients being sensitive to the punitive and of the
Board, will willingly respond to the workable suggestions
given in the areas of choice of technology and environmental
safety by this agency. For this, there is a need to enhance
and suitably amend the structure and mandate of the Himachal
Pradesh State Environment Protection and Pollution Control
8.S.6. ACTION REQUIRED:
1. The present system for environmental clearance for
projects under the Air and Water Act needs immediate review
so as to accommodate concerns pertaining to maintenance
and growth of floral and faunal diversity and the sociocultural
systems. There assessments needs to be made multidisplinary
and mandatory for even the smaller projects/ventures.
2. Accelerating the rural sanitation programme through
voluntary organisation like Sulabh International to cover
all 9.69 lac house holds in the State.
3. Creating awareness regarding the need and positive
aspects of rural sanitation and health education as instances
are available where latrines have been used because of
individual preferences for open fields.
4. Evolving ways and mechanism for improving poor drainage
in small towns and villages where indiscriminate defecation
is practiced especially by children.
5. Putting in place proper sewerage system for major towns
in the state as the problem is likely to become more acute
with increasing growth in urban population.
6. All schools in the State need to be provided low sanitation
facility like Sulabh sauchalaya.
7. The State Govt. should ensure efficient implementation
of Water (Prevention & Control of Pollution) Act,
1974, Environmental Protection Act, 1986 and "The
Himachal Pradesh Non-biodegradable Garbage (Control) Act,
1995 through Urban Local Bodies.
8. Use of local material for urban housing.
9. Engineering staff trained to be sensitized to the environment.
10. Establishment of satellite townships around urban
centres to lessen the pressure on large towns.
11. Monitoring the Air and Water quality in the state
and its publicity for the benefit of citizens.
8.T. ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION AND AWARENESS:
8.T.1. Environmental Awareness and Education is a key
area in each sector. The education system is presently
not able to fully utilize the capacity due to the lack
of sensitivity to local surroundings and the lack of curiosity
of the environment.
8.T.2. ACTION REQUIRED:
1. Increase skills related to environmental management
in all relevant training programmes.
2. Respond to training needs to minority, isolated and
marginalised people to assist them to participate more
fully in developing sustainable work practices and life
styles needed for greater collaboration and interaction
in environmental education and training.
3. Enhance the understanding of the relationship between
good environmental management and good practices in business.
4. The quality of school life in terms of existing educational
practices need to be improved by laying stress on the
child centred, local specific and activity based teaching
5. Utilisation of expertise in teacher training institutions
and University system to plan and diverse environmental
related activities/programmes for school education and
also for providing necessary training for strengthening
school community interactions.
6. Formulation of a suitable environmental education resources
material including documentaries for sensitization of
the different sectors.
7. Need of increasing the environment awareness in the
elementary education system through the training of teachers
and skill upgradation of the DIET centres.
8.U. NATURAL HAZARDS MANAGEMENT:
8.U.1. Himachal till date has experience the Great Kangra
Earthquake (M>8) during 1905. Numerous other earthquakes
of magnitude 5.5 to 7 earthquakes have occurred during
this century. These have caused extensive loss of life
and property. Another major hazard is the landslide and
avalanche activity, often accompanied by flash floods.
Some parts of the Higher Himalayas in District Chamba,
Kangra, Shimla, Mandi and Kinnaur are subjected to cloud
bursts which have caused extensive suffering to people
in remote regions.
8.U.2. ACTION REQUIRED:
1. Establishment of infrastructure for disaster management.
2. Need to avoid construction of buildings/settlements
on the river sides and shift the current settlements to
3. Need to undertake afforestation along the river banks
and strengthening of embankments at a large scale to reduce
the risk of soil erosion and subsequent landslides.
4. Identification of water induced disaster prone areas.
5. Monitoring of geomorphic and all other related processes
for the clear understanding of these hazards, estimation
of risks and mitigation of these disasters.
6. Formulation of proper management plan in the river
catchments to reduce the occurrence of cloud burst and
7. Need for a close network of seismographs to record
all the tremors and their regional implications for a
correct understanding of the various processes.
8. To initiate, support and commission activities that
would generate significant, high quality data and information
for hazard assessment and risk evaluation.
9. To collate, commission and archive regulation codes
for: i) Land use planning.ii) Buildings iii) Roads.
10. All development plans must have mandatory settlement
on impact of hazards.