An authorized ministry source statement said it prepared an integrated plan last year to compensate for trees in forests subject to indiscriminate cutting over the past two decades, especially in man-made forests covering 6000 hectares at the time of the fall of the regime. Forest improvement last year used allocations exceeding 810,000,000 iraqi dinar for development of existing forests and establishment of others, both man-made and natural.
The source stressed the importance of the project, which will introduce new species and varieties of international origin in order to improve the environment, provide economic return from timber production, protect the soil from erosion and runoff, maintain river basins, moderate climate, minimize damage from dust storms, and stop sand encroachment or desertification in governorates in southern and central Iraq.
Meanwhile, 180 farming divisions in all provinces began tree farming on 50,000 sq. m for a total area of over nine thousand dunums.
An official source at the Department of Planning and Follow-up claimed agricultural divisions began operations on their allocated areas starting from scratch. He expressed confidence that the completion of the mini-forest projects in each division will be valuable “seed” experiences for wide future implementation.(Source)Brian Hall