Unique replacement for fuelwood in Nagaland

Published: Wednesday 28 February 2007

-- (Credit: K T THOMAS RENGMA)nagaland's forest department has undertaken a new scheme to increase the state's forest cover. Under the programme, forest officials are to gift villagers gas stoves and liquified petroleum gas (lpg) cylinder kits.

The initiative aims to discourage people from exploiting forests for firewood extraction and, instead, motivate them to use commercial gas stoves and lpg cylinders for community cooking and festivities. "This will help reduce the burden on forests and help in conservation," said Binchilo Thong, commissioner and secretary, Nagaland department of forest and environment.

So far, the department has distributed gas stove and cylinder kits in Kohima, Zunheboto and Mokokchung districts. "The initiative also aims to create awareness among villagers and discourage them from using firewood," said Albert Solo, the state conservator of forests. "Most villagers are suffering from smoke-induced diseases. Opting for gas burners will be less hazardous, besides being economical," Solo added. People below poverty line, widows and the old-aged are getting free cylinders.

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