Banks to help in­crease In­dia's for­est cover

Down to Earth - - THE FORTNIGHT -

Min­istry of En­vi­ron­ment, For­est and Cli­mate Change has pre­pared a pro­posal that all banks should al­lo­cate a min­i­mum of 25 per cent of their cor­po­rate so­cial re­spon­si­bil­ity (CSR) funds for af­foresta­tion across the coun­try. The min­istry has pro­posed this mea­sure un­der clause 135 of the Com­pa­nies Act, 2013. Ac­cord­ing to it, in ev­ery fi­nan­cial year, com­pa­nies are re­quired to spend at least 2 per cent of their av­er­age net profit of three pre­ced­ing years on CSR ini­tia­tives, in­clud­ing ken­sur­ing en­vi­ron­men­tal sus­tain­abil­i­tyy. The pro­posal is part of the coun­try's cli­mate ac­tion plan to achieve its na­tion­ally de­ter­mined con­tri­bu­tion tar­get un­der the 2015 Paris Agree­ment. Cur­rently, 24 per cent of In­dia's ge­o­graph­i­cal area is un­der forests.

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