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Current Affairs

Seabuckthorn plantations

Date: 15 March 2021 Tags: Climate Change

Issue

The Himachal Pradesh government is planning to plant large number of seabuckthorn plants in cold areas of the state.

 

Details

  • Seabuckthorn is a shrub which gives an orange-yellow coloured edible berry. The plant is found above the tree line in the Himalayan region.

  • It is naturally found in cold desert areas such as Spiti and Ladakh. It is locally known as Chharma in Himachal Pradesh.

  • States such as Himachal, UT of Ladakh, Uttarakhand, Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh support this plant species.

 

Benefits

  • Seabuckthorn is a part of traditional medicine and is widely used for treating stomach, heart and skin problems. 

  • The fruit and leaves are rich in vitamins, carotenoids and omega fatty acids. The fruit can help troops in adjusting to high-altitude areas.

  • In addition to being a source of fodder and fuelwood, the plant prevents soil-erosion, controls siltation in rivers and helps preserve biodiversity of plants.

  • There are other commercial uses of Seabuckthorn such as making juices, jams, nutritional capsules etc. 

 

The project

  • The crop association wants various Himalayan states/UTs to use compensatory afforestation or CAMPA funds to plant seabuckthorn on arid and marginal lands.

  • The environment ministry has asked state governments to prepare a plan for the project in light of reduction of water flow from Himalayan glaciers and its impact on ecology.