Trees on private lands: A regulatory impact analysis in select states in India.wca2014-2466 Chetan Agarwal 1,* 1Independent Analyst, New Delhi, India
Trees outside forests area an important source of timber, providing up to two thirds of the domestic supply. Historically, trees on private lands in India have been broadly classified into regulated and exempt, broadly depending on their value, and their importance in the forest lands of the state. In recent decades there has been a process of partial deregulation in the agroforestry sector driven largely by the impulse to reduce the regulatory burden and dis-incentives for farmer, subject to not increasing the risk of illegal felling in state forests. More recently, export market demands stemming from legislation like the Lacey Act (USA), and the EU Timber Regulations require that wood products can be shown to be coming from legal sources. In addition, local agroforestry systems also provide valuable subsistence and ecosystem service benefits. This paper will review the regulatory system in select states, analyse the official regulations as well as how they are implemented in practice, assess the costs and benefits for both the regulator and the regulated, and identify options for sustainability, sustaining local ecosystem services, and income, for both domestic supply and exports.