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Forest landscapes of the southern western Ghats, India

B.R. Ramesh
Rajan Gurukkal


J.C. Kala

Texte intégral

1Earth is the only planet known to sustain life. Yet, human actions are progressively reducing the planet’s life supporting capacity. The combined destructive impact of a large majority which is struggling to stay live and a few minority which are consuming most of the world’s resources are undermining the very means by which all can survive and flourish. Humanity’s relationship with the environment will continue to deteriorate until a new international economic order is established, population stabilize and sustainable modes of development become the way of life rather than exceptions.

2Conservation of Natural resources is pre requisite to the sustainable development. This in concrete term means -maintenance of essential eco systems- Forests, Fresh water and Marine; preservation of genetic diversity; and sustainable utilization of species.

3India is one of the 16 mega Biodiversity countries of the world and the Western Ghats constitute one of the Bio diversity hot spots. Increasing demographic pressure and changing landscape has caused considerable degradation of this unique eco system. Consequently the ecological services rendered by Western Ghats have suffered a s serious set back.

4Management of such eco system has to be people centric and must carry them along for a meaningful implementation. With this in view landscape approach has been found to be most appropriate. Forests constitute the main natural resources of the region and the home for biodiversity, of which many species are endemic to the area. Its sustainable management is a challenge to the foresters.

5The book” FOREST LANDSCAPES OF SOUTHERN WESTERN GHATS, INDIA” provides a critical analysis of landscape for bio diversity conservation and in turn the management needs.

6I am sure the book will be widely used by the foresters, academicians, NGOs working in the filed of sustainable natural resource management.

7I wish all the best to the authors in their endeavor.


Director General of Forests & Secretary
Ministry of Environment & Forests
Government of India

© Institut Français de Pondichéry, 2007

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