By OUR STAFF REPORTER
DEHRADUN, 4 Dec: The Forest Research Institute (FRI) organised a visit by students of Lucknow region who have came to the Regional Science Congress at Graphic Era University, with their scouts and Coordinator. As many as 120 students from class 9 and 11 standards visited the campus of the institute. Before the visit, an interaction between students and teachers with Director, FRI, and other subject experts was organised in the convocation Hall of the institute. The event was inaugurated by Arun Singh Rawat, Director, FRI. In his inaugural address, he gave a brief introduction of the institute and history of forestry in India. He said that the institute was working on three components like research, extension and education. Under the research component, the institute covers silviculture and forest management, identification of flora and its preservation in the DD Herbarium of the institute in physical as well as in digital form. He said the institute had developed many technologies like natural dye, bamboo preservative ZiBOC, Rakshak-Bio pesticide for poplar defoliators, wood bending, solar kiln for wood seasoning, sustainable harvesting of medicinal plants, reclamation of overburdened mined areas, improved varieties of agroforestry species like Melia, Eucalyptus, Poplar, etc. The institute has FRI Deemed to be University status where MSc courses in Forestry, Wood Science and Technology, Environment management and Paper and Cellulose are being conducted. PhD classes are also conducted at the said university. The students’ visit was part of a programme, “PRAKRITI”, launched by the Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education, Dehradun, to establish a dialogue between teachers and students of Kendriya and Navodaya Vidyalayas of the country with subject experts of the institute to share scientific knowledge in the field of forestry. Dr AK Pandey, Head, Extension Division of the Institute, gave a presentation on important medicinal plants and their utilisation. He spoke about the uses of commonly used medicinal plants. He said there was a global resurgence in utilisation of medicinal plants. He laid emphasis on conservation and propagation of medicinal plants on farmland so that these should not be taken from forests illegally and pressure of medicinal plants in their natural habitat minimised. N Bala, Head, Forest Ecology and Climate Change, gave a presentation on forest conservation to mitigate climate change. He spoke about anthropogenic intervention in forests and man-made disasters. He mentioned that melting of glaciers due to global warming was alarming for the future. Greater emission of Carbon Dioxide in the environment was the main cause of global warming. It was due to burning of fossil fuels and combustion of petrol and diesel in vehicles. The enormous emission affected the ozone layer. There was a need to capture the carbon in the form of carbon sequestration which was only possible by developing tree cover. The programme was anchored by Dr Smita Nautiyal, Scientist-D of Forest Botany Division. A documentary on the institute was also screened to show its history and the different forestry interventions. The students also visited FRI museums, botanical garden and research divisions of the institute.