Apr 22, Colombo: The Sri Lankan government has taken measures to increase the country's forest cover to 35 percent by the year 2020.
The Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Energy Development has said that steps have been taken to expand cultivation of forest in all districts.
According to the UNDP, Sri Lanka has lost half of its forest cover during the past hundred years and deforestation and forest degradation which result in lack of water for farming and drinking is a source of poverty for rural households.
Also the dwindling forest cover increases the risk of drought and forest fires as Sri Lanka recently experienced.
A pilot project in this connection will be launched next month under the participation of Minister Susil Premajayantha, the state run radio reported.
The programme will be launched countrywide in connection with the World Environment Day which falls in the month of June.