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International Seminar on Forest Health and Environment on on October 5, 2023

“International Seminar on Forest Health and Environment” was organized by the Department of Environmental Sciences COMSATS University Islamabad, Abbottabad Campus on October 5, 2023. Department of Environmental Sciences often organizes such events to spread awareness among the community, students, and academia. Several distinguished speakers from various departments were invited to talk on various aspects related to forests and the environment. The seminar was moderated by Dr. Akhtar Iqbal and attended by faculty and students of CUI, Abbottabad campus. After recitation of Holy Quran, Prof. Dr. Muhammad Irshad, Chairman Department of Environmental Sciences (CUI, ATD), welcomed the audience and briefly discussed the importance of forests in the environment. Then Prof. Dr. Mohammad Maroof Shah, Director  COMSATS University Islamabad (CUI, ATD), delivered a talk on “Challenges faced by forests in Pakistan”. Talking about this very important issue, Prof. Dr. Mohammad Maroof Shah enlightened the audience from various domains of life about the status of forests in Pakistan and their importance in our lives. He also briefly discussed the types of forests in Pakistan. The focus of his talk was to draw the attention of the audience and other speakers toward deforestation due to timber logging, industrial and commercial activities (such as mining and real estate development), encroachment, and agricultural expansion.

Mr. Sajid Hussain, WWF Nathiyagali, briefed the audience on forest fires and wildlife. He presented various projects run by WWF like the Forest Fire Detection-Early Warning System installed in Mansehra, the Installation of a Collar with a leopard, and the creation of a small dam in the forest area. Then Dr. Alidehou Jerrold Agbankpe, University of Abomey-Calavi, Benin, talked about Forests in Africa with a particular perspective of Benin. Mr. Syed Zahid Kazmi, Director Galiyat Development Authority (GDA), talked about the role of Galiyat forests in ecotourism. The last speech was delivered by Mr. Syed Rizwan Shah Kazmi, DFO forest department, who enlightened the audience with the performance of the forest department. He also insisted on establishing a collaboration between academia and various departments of the Government. Furthermore, he shared some ideas with the students for further research in the domain.  The seminar was concluded with an award ceremony to honor the resource personnel and organizers with souvenir distribution by the director of the campus accompanied by Prof. Dr. Faridullah, HoD dept. of ES and guests.

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