06 May 2024, 22:53

Committee formed to assess loss of biodiversity in Sundarbans fire

DHAKA, May 6, 2024 (BSS) – The Forest Department has formed a committee to assess the loss of biodiversity in the wake of the Sundarbans fire. 

Mihir Kumar, Conservator of Forests of Khulna Region, has been made as the chairman of the committee and Divisional Forest Officer of Khulna Management Planning Department as member-secretary, said a press release. 

Other members of the committee are representatives of the Department of Environment; Divisional Forest Officer, Bagerhat, Sundarbans East Forest Division; Dr. S. M Feroz, Professor of Forestry and Wood Technology discipline of Khulna University; Dr. Swapan Kumar Sarker, Mangrove Ecologist of Aranyak Foundation and Professor of Shahjalal University of Science and Technology, Sylhet and representative of Wildlife Conservation Society.

The committee has been asked to submit a detailed report within the next 10 working days assessing the damage to forest resources and biodiversity and making recommendations about the next steps to be taken.

Although the fire is completely under control, the forest department is now constantly monitoring it through drones.

Smoke from the fire was detected thrice today by drone monitoring and quickly extinguished. The area of ??the fire was 7.9 acres, out of which 5 acres were damaged.

In the case of forest fires, the fire also remains deep in the soil in the roots of the trees, which can then re-ignite or smoke after a few hours. 

Therefore, to avoid any kind of accident, from today till the next three days, the patrol team of the forest department will be responsible for fire monitoring and extinguishing any new fire at any place.

Currently, along with the forest department, fire service and police force members are on duty at the spot.  The fire service team will also be present at the spot tomorrow. 

Coast Guard, Navy and Air Force personnel left the scene as the fire was brought under control. 

Environment, Forest and Climate Change Minister Saber Hossain Chowdhury, Secretary Dr Farhina Ahmed and Chief Conservator of Forests Md. Amir Hossain Chowdhury are supervising and coordinating the fire fighting activities of Sundarbans round the clock.

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