partition of Indian sub-continent in 1947, Bangladesh forests
were administered under Forest Circles of the Bangal and Assem
Forest Departments. From 1947 to 1962, the Provincial Forest
Department was the authority with a Conservator of Forests, and
subsequently until 1971 by a Chief Conservator of Forests. With
the formation of Bangladesh
in 1971, reserved and proposed reserve forests passed to the
Bangladesh Forest Department. From 1971 to 1989, BFD fell under
the Ministry of Agriculture. The Department enjoyed varying
interest in terms of attention from Government. For a brief
spell, there was an Inspector General of Forests, in addition to
the Chief Conservation of forests, to coordinate forestry
activities. During 1987-89, Forestry was a Division of
Agriculture Ministry with a Secretary to Government in charge
of the Forestry Division.
of Environment (DoE) established in 1977 under the Environment
Pollution Control Ordinance, 1977 still functions under the ECA.
formation of the new Ministry of Environment and Forests, in
1989, both the departments were transferred to this new
Ministry. The DoE has been placed under the MoEF as its
technical wing and is statutorily responsible for the
implementation of the Environment Conservation Act, 1995.
two departments, MoEF controls the Bangladesh Forest Industries
Development Corporation (BFIDC), Bangladesh Forest Research
Institute (BFRI) and Bangladesh National Herbarium (BNH).
The Ministry of
Environment & Forests is the nodal agency in the administrative
structure of the Central Government, for the planning,
promotion, co-ordination and overseeing the implementation of
environmental and forestry programmes. MoEF oversees all
environmental matters in the country and is a permanent member
of the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council.
also plays a pivotal role as a participant of United Nations
Environment Programme (UNEP). The principal activities
undertaken by Ministry of Environment & Forests consist of
conservation & survey of flora, fauna, forests and wildlife,
prevention & control of pollution, forestation & regeneration of
degraded areas and protection of environment, in the framework
of legislations. The main tools utilized for this include
surveys, impact assessment, control of pollution, regeneration
programmes, support to organizations, research to solve
solutions and training to augment the requisite manpower,
collection and dissemination of environmental information and
creation of environmental awareness among all sectors of the
country's population. The organizational structure of the
ministry covers a number of divisions, directorate, board,
subordinate offices, autonomous institutions and public sector
undertakings. In short, Ministry of Environment & Forest (MoEF)
has the following major functions:
of environment and ecology.
relating to environment pollution control.
Conservation of forests and development of forest resources
private), forest inventory, grading and quality control of
regeneration of forest extraction of forest produce.
exotic cinchona and rubber.
gardens and botanical surveys.
is responsible for preparation of schemes and coordination in
respect of forest.
training in forestry.
wild birds and animals and establishment of sanctuaries.
relating to marketing of forest produce.
international organizations and matters relating to treaties and
agreements with other countries and world bodies relating to
subjects allotted to this Ministry.
Apart form two
major departments, i.e., Department of Environment and
Department of Forest, working under this ministry, there are
Forest Research Institute (BFRI) was established in 1955 and
mandated to provide research support to the Forestry sub-sector
of the country, including Forest Department, Bangladesh Forest
Industries Development Corporation, NGO and other private
enterprises. BFRI's research activities aim to develop
appropriate technologies to maintain sustainable productivity of
forest land and of forest industries without resource depletion.
National Herbarium (BNR)
National Herbarium is a plant survey, collection, identification
and conservation organization. It documents the plant biological
diversity of the country and its collections are accessible
samples of natural population. The collection of the herbarium
is a national property that goes down to the posterity through
generation for hundreds of years and work as reference materials
on the flora of the country. The National Herbarium serves as
repository of technical information on plant genetic resources
and advises the Government on technical aspects of question
dealt with by the herbarium. It also provides direction required
in the implementation of policies laid down by the Government in
relation to plant biodiversity conservation.
Forest Industries Development Corporation (BFIDC) is mandated
to rubber plantation, processing and to extract
timber from inaccessible Forest areas. After sawing, seasoning
and treatments, these timbers are used in wood based industries
for production of quality furniture, electric poles, anchor
logs, cross arms, railway slippers, doors & windows, woodtex,
tea chest and plywood etc. In addition to this, BFIDC have been
raising Rubber plantation in the district of greater chittagong,
Sylhet, Mymensingh and Tangail since 1961 in order to increase
the productivity of the fellow forest land through producing row
rubber in the country. BFIDC so far has raised 32,625 acres of
started plantation in its 15 (fifteen) Rubber Estates in greater
Chittagong, Sylhet, Tangail and Mymensingh districts and 10
(ten) acres experimental rubber plantation in Barind tract (Rangpur
distict ) to test the viability of rubber plantation. Besides,
about 33,000 acres rubber plantation has been raised in private
sector with technical assistance of BFIDC.