Budget 2023: Focus On Green Growth With MISHTI And Amrit Dharohar Programmes


Union Budget 2023-24 gave special attention to green growth with specific focus on mangrove plantations and conserving wetlands.

The Economic Survey of 2022-2023, released on 31 January 2023, highlighted India’s increasing forest cover and preservation of ecosystems as steps towards achieving net-zero targets.

In terms of the average yearly net gain in forest area between 2010 and 2020, India is third in the world.

According to the Indian State of Forest Report (ISFR), the carbon stock of forests was around 7,204 million tonnes in 2019. This showed an increase by 79.4 million tonnes over the previous assessments for 2017. This amounts to 30.1 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent in carbon emissions concealed by the forests and tree cover.

Building on India’s success in afforestation, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced the Mangrove Initiative for Shoreline Habitats and Tangible Incomes (MISHTI).

This project will take up mangrove plantation along the vast coastline and on salt pan lands. The implementation will be carried forward through convergence between Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS), Compensatory Afforestation Fund Management and Planning Authority (CAMPA) Fund and other programmes.

Further, with a focus on conserving wetlands, the government launched the scheme, Amrit Dharohar.

This will be implemented over the next three years to encourage optimal use of wetlands.

Local communities have been at the forefront of conservation efforts and the government through the scheme seeks to support them in their efforts.

Wetlands are vital ecosystems which sustain biological diversity. The Finance Minister during her speech quoted the Prime Minister from his latest ‘Mann Ki Baat’, where he mentioned the increase in the number of Ramsar sites in India—from 26 in 2014 to 75 now.

The 75 Ramsar sites for wetlands in India make up a total area of 13.3 lakh hectares.

These wetlands carry numerous benefits and values – ranging from freshwater supply, food and building materials, flood control, groundwater recharge and climate change mitigation.