India is among the first five countries in the world, the first in Asia and the first among the biodiversity-rich mega diverse nations, to have submitted Sixth National Report (NR6) to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the Environment Ministry said Saturday.
The report was submitted online to the CBD Secretariat by Environment Minister Harsh Vardhan during the inaugural session of the 13th National Meeting of the State Biodiversity Boards (SBBs) organised by the National Biodiversity Authority (NBA).
"While globally, biodiversity is facing increasing pressure on account of habitat fragmentation and destruction, invasive alien species, pollution, climate change and oversuse of resources, India is one of the few countries where forest cover is on the rise, with its forests teeming with wildlife.''
"I am also happy to note that India is on track to achieve the biodiversity targets at the national level and it is also contributing significantly towards achievement of the global biodiversity targets," he said.
The submission of national reports is a mandatory obligation on parties to international treaties, including the CBD.
"As a responsible nation, India has never reneged on its international commitments and has earlier submitted on time five national reports to the CBD. The NR6 provides an update of progress in achievement of 12 National Biodiversity Targets (NBT) developed under the convention process in line with the 20 global Aichi biodiversity targets," he added.
The report highlights that while India has exceeded/ overachieved two NBTs, it is on track to achieve eight NBTs and with respect to two remaining NBTs, the country is striving to meet the targets by the stipulated time of 2020.
According to the report, India has exceeded the terrestrial component of 17 per cent of Aichi target 11, and 20 per cent of corresponding NBT relating to areas under biodiversity management.
"India has been investing a huge amount on biodiversity directly or indirectly through several development schemes of the central and state governments, to the tune of Rs 70,000 crores per annum.'' as against the estimated annual requirement of nearly Rs 1,09,000 crore.