Botanical Survey of India- Relevance for UPSC Exam
- GS Paper 2: Environment- Conservation, environmental pollution, and degradation.
Botanical Survey of India- Context
- The Botanical Survey of India, in its new publication Plant Discoveries 2020 has added 267 new taxa/ species to the country’s flora.
- The 267 new discoveries include 119 angiosperms; 3 pteridophytes; 5 bryophytes, 44 lichens; 57 fungi, 21 algae, and 18 microbes.
- Total Plant diversity in India: With these new discoveries the latest estimate of plant diversity in India stands at 54,733 taxa.
BSI Plant Discoveries 2020- Key Findings
- Since 2012, a total number of 3,245 taxa of plants from different plant groups have been discovered from India.
- Most discoveries have been made from seed plants, with 1,199 (37%) taxa, followed by fungi 894 (27%).
- Geographical distribution: 22% of the discoveries were made from the Western Ghats followed by Western Himalayas (15%), Eastern Himalayas (14%), and Northeast Ranges (12%).
- The West coast contributed 10% while East Coast contributed (9%) in total discoveries;
- The Eastern Ghats and South Deccan contribute 4% of each and
- Central Highland and North Deccan added 3% each.
Botanical Survey of India-Key Points
- Background: BSI was established in 1890 with the aim to explore plant resources of the country and to identify plants species with economic virtues.
- About: Botanical Survey of India is the apex research organization under the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEFCC).
- Headquarter: Kolkata, West Bengal.
- It also has nine regional circles
- Mandate: BSI is responsible for carrying out taxonomic and floristic studies on wild plant resources of the country.
Botanical Survey of India- Key Initiatives
- BSI has Floristic surveys of many of the Indian state and Union territories.
- Floristic survey of 68 protected areas, 26 sacred groves, 01 Ramsar site, 12 fragile ecosystems and 23 Tiger Reserves have been completed.
- Towards fulfilling the Global Strategy for Plant Conservation target on ex-situ conservation, the department has 12 botanical gardens spread in different biogeographical zones of the country.
- BSI has also developed a digital platform ‘Indian Plant Diversity Information System (IPDIS)’.