The Government of Japan extended grant assistance to the Government of Nepal to support the effort of the country to strengthen the forest preservation system in 2010. Since then, the Government of Japan continued consultations with the Government of Nepal. As a result, the Government of Japan decided to provide 53 Nissan Pickup Vehicles, Fire Fighting equipment, Soil Conservation, Restoration and Analysis equipment and GIS and Remote Sensing Software required for status analysis and conservation management of forests, amounting to six hundred million Yen (\600,000,000) approximately (as per conversion rate in 2010) NRs.451, 800,000.
According to a press release of Embassy of Japan, the 53 Nissan Pickup Vehicles will be deployed at Forests Offices, National Parks and Soil Conservation Offices under the Ministry of Forests and Soil Conservation in some districts to be utilized for monitoring of forest and for assisting fire fighting.
Equipment such as Jumpsuit and Portable water spreader is to be utilized for fire-fighting when forest fires occur. Soil Conservation, Restoration and Analysis equipment is to be utilized for an investigation into the status for landslide prevention.
GIS and Remote Sensing Software is to be utilized in the creation of ecosystem distribution maps based on the observed data. Each piece of equipment contributes to the status analysis and conservation management of forests.
In Nepal, forest occupies approximately 40% of the total land area. Nepalese people still depend on forest resources such as firewood as a primary source of energy. This has caused deforestation and forest degradation in many remote areas which is one of the reasons behind landslides and soil erosion. In recent years Nepal has been affected by various negative impacts that seem to be due to global warming, such as forest fires caused by abnormal dryness and changes of the ecosystem in the Himalayan Region. Thus, the conservation, management of forests and monitoring of ecosystems have become serious challenges in Nepal.
The Government of Japan expects the Government of Nepal to tackle forest preservation promptly and appropriately more so because of the support of the Government of Japan, and prevent deforestation and forest degradation and minimize the effects of global warming in these areas. In addition, the Government of Japan hopes that this support will play a significant role in further strengthening the cordial and friendly relationship between Japan and Nepal.