Costs and Benefits of Reducing Deforestation and Forest Degradation in Nepal; ICIMOD Working Paper 2017/5
In 2010, forests accounted for 40 percent (5.96 million ha) and other types of woodland made up 4 percent (0.65 million ha ) of the land area of Nepal (DFRS 2015c). Of the total forest area, 38 percent was in the mid-hills, 32 percent in the high mountains, 23 percent in the Siwaliks, and 7 percent in the Terai. The Terai comprises the plains of Nepal and the Siwaliks are a low range of hills between the Terai and the mid-hills. The Terai and the Siwaliks have witnessed steady deforestation with the gradual conversion of forest to agricultural land and the growth of infrastructure development. In the mid-hills and high mountains, however, forest cover has been increasing since 1995 (DFRS, 2014a, 2014b, 2015a, 2015b). The annual deforestation rate is 0.44 percent (1,648 ha/yr.) in the Terai and 0.18 percent (2,537 ha/yr.) in the Siwaliks. The average carbon stock in Nepal’s forests is 177 tC/ha, with the lowest amount (117 tC/ha) in the Siwaliks and the highest amount (272 tC/ha) in the mountains (DFRS, 2014a, 2015a, 2015c).