Even places such as Chennai have started opening of oxygen parlours as a result of scarcity in oxygen. If plundering of forest wealth continued, even Coimbatore would require oxygen parlours in the near future, said V.T. Kandasamy, Conservator of Forests, Coimbatore Circle.
He was speaking at a function organised by Osai, a non-governmental organisation to mark the World Forestry Day celebrations at Government Higher Secondary school in Asokapuram, near Thudialur.
Mr. Kandasamy said that a tree in its life-time was found to be producing oxygen worth Rs. 15 lakhs.
There was a need to grow trees wherever possible.
The objective of holding the function at a school was to encourage youngsters to nurture trees.
Of the 4,000 tigers estimated across the world, 1,700 were in India and of the 170 tigers in Tamil Nadu forests, nearly 100 were in The Nilgiris, Coimbatore, and Sathyamangalam areas.
He said that awareness among younger generations was on the rise. Though our economy had improved we were struggling for drinking water.
It was time to plant more saplings.District Forest Officer V. Thirunavukkarasu said that people should ensure that saplings planted during various occasions grew into trees.
Tourists visiting forest areas should avoid causing forest fire and use of plastics.
President of OSAI K. Kalidasan; Headmaster of the School K. Ravichandran; Forestry Extension Officer G. Rajeswaran; secretary of OSAI Avai Nayagan; and vice-president M. Ganesh attended the function.
The participants planted saplings. A short film “Save our Sholas” was screened for the students.
In the Anaimalai Tiger Range (ATR), Range Officer – Pollachi, N. Ganesh Ram and a team of officials launched a drive to plant saplings in Panchayat Union schools.
The project was launched at Nachiar Vidyalayam school.