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Report: INTERSECTING FOREST AND CITY

HOW TO SEE BUFFER REGION OF BANNERGHATTA NATIONAL PARK

A FOUNDATIONAL STUDY TO REVIEW BUFFER ZONES FOR URBAN FORESTS

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Download the Full Report (3 MB)

This is a foundational report based on a descriptive research, aimed to profile buffer region of Bannerghatta National Park (BNP), through available records and insights from select stakeholders. It sets itself to understand variety of factors that might impact design and public acceptance of buffer region of BNP, India’s largest protected urban forest.

Key findings of the report highlight brazen exclusion of a large extent of BNP’s buffer region out of the draft Eco-sensitive Zone of BNP. It compares recommendations of area to be identified as eco-sensitive by a team of scientists from Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru with actual area. The analysis shows that out of 147 villages with very high to high eco-sensitivity, only 74 made to the Draft ESZ, with 16 given just a perfunctory extent of 100 mts. Additionally, report provides a red list of 22 villages that are immensely valuable for long-term conservation of BNP, but they have been excluded from the ESZ.

It further forecasts that the situation will get grimmer once details of revised ESZ are released, as it now stands reduced to only 181.57 sq. km from earlier 268.96 sq.km. This implies that many more areas at the fringe of BNP are struck out. Such a fragile buffer zone will increase conflicts between wildlife and people, as without ESZ regulations land around BNP will continue to get fragmented and developed for commercial purposes.

Rest of the report is based on interviews with forest officials and brief analysis of Bangalore’s Master Plan in respect to BNP, besides a discussion on large transit infrastructure projects looming over Park’s buffer and their potential impact.

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