Analyzing the impact of forest harvesting ban in northern temperate forest. A case study of Anakar Valley, Kalam Swat Region, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan

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Sultan Muhammad, Amir Hamza, Kaleem Mehmood, Muhammad Adnan, Muhammad Tayyab


The devastating flood of 1992 due to policy shift of forest management to owners compelled the government to imposition of ban on green tree cutting and extraction of timber from the forest. The ban on one hand resulted in accumulation of huge volume of mature trees due to either disease, decay or dying affecting the soil and ecosystem while on the other hand adversely affected the livelihood of owners. The study was conducted to assess the amount of felled and decaying timber due to ban on harvesting to highlight huge economic loss to the owners and society. For this purpose, we analyzed volume of dead, dry and diseased trees in Anakar valley, Kalam District Swat. Twelve grids of 400 x 400 meters were taken for quantification where diameters at breast height were measured for all felled trees and local volume table was used for volume estimation. The study concluded that total volume of Pinus wallichian and Abies pindrow is 41.61 m3 and 1121.40m3 respectively (Total 1163.01 m3) in the study area which correspond to 5302.67 m3 for the whole coniferous forest of the country. The study concluded that unextracted and decaying timber is affecting the health of the forest through spreading of diseases and enhancing risk for forest fire in future along with huge economic loss both to the state and owners. The study will help the scientific community to know the impact of harvesting ban and investigate further its effect on soil and can be replicated at global level.

Keywords: Dead; Diseased; Decay; Dry; Kalam; Swat

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