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Content for Mains Enrichment (Ethics/Essay):

Tamil Nadu’s forest man


Environmentalist D Saravanan’s efforts have turned over 40 hectares of barren land into a lush, indigenous forest called  Aranya Forests

From once being a barren land with just a handful of trees, the forest today is home to more than 700 native plant species.

The growth of the forest over the last three decades has had a huge ecological impact on the area, increasing the rate of rainfall and reducing air pollution.

How does he do it?

The land where Aranya now stands had a unique topography of clay and Cuddalore sandstone structures, with no topsoil. The first step was to bring water into the land and prevent runoffs. For this, Saravanan built contour bunds to arrest water and maintain groundwater recharge. He also planted grass to relax the soil and restore moisture content.

Next, to curb the spread of invasive species and preserve indigenous varieties, Saravanan travelled across the eastern coast of Tamil Nadu, from Chennai to Kanyakumari. He visited sacred groves to collect indigenous seeds suitable for the land.

He continues to plant trees and educate the local community and students on the importance of indigenous forests. He also works with local and regional authorities on forestry and wildlife management.


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