A conference of forest ministers of southern states held here on Thursday decided to set up a `Southern Forest Ministers’ Interstate Coordination Council to improve concerted efforts for ensuring ecological, socio-economic and livelihood security of the region.
The council, which would issue standard operating procedure for actions in various forest related matters, would have a full-time secretariat in forest departments in southern states. Kerala forest minister Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan will function as the president of the council for the first year.
He said a regional wildlife crime control bureau should be established in the line of the national wildlife crime control bureau. Andhra Pradesh Forest Minister Gopal Krishna Reddy sought the support of other southern states for the protection of red sander forests in that state.