The map of potential vegetation of Nepal: a forestry/agro-ecological/biodiversity classification system uri icon


  • The intention of this paper is to introduce the Potential Vegetation Map as a potential tool in Nepal in the fi elds of Forestry, Agriculture, Horticulture, Livestock, and Biodiversity/Conservation. The introduction in chapter 1 explains that the purpose of this paper is to inspire people working with natural resource management in Nepal to discuss what constitutes a good framework for understanding the tremendous varia- tion of climate, vegetation, farming systems, and biodiversity in Nepal. Chapter 2 explains how the Potential Vegetation Map is based on work car- ried out in Nepal over a period of more than 30 years by a large number of people and organisations, and how the method of vegetation mapping relates to other vegetation classifi cation carried out in the rest of the world. The chapter also gives a brief account of the work of the main authors at the dif- ferent stages of development of the map. Chapter 3 introduces a new climate classifi cation in Nepal based on 261 me- teorological stations in the country and extensive analysis by an expert from the Department of Hydrology and Meteorology (the co-author of the present paper). The classifi cation is based on more stations than any previously pub- lished account. The classifi cation presents the climate in the context of the Potential Vegetation Map. Chapter 4 presents the physiographic classifi cation of Nepal. This is a classi- fi cation used by practically all Government Departments, Donors, Non Gov- ernment Organisations and fi eld workers in Nepal. It divides Nepal into 3 to 5 'horizontal sections'. Chapter 5 presents some of the important requirements of an agro-ecological classification and also shows that the physiographic classifi cation only partly fulfi ls the requirements of an agro-ecological classifi cation. Chapter 6 presents a brief account of agroecological classifi cation in Nepal and how the Potential Vegetation Map relates to these other classifi cations. Chapter 7 looks at the major objectives of the Forest Sector Policy (2000), the Agricultural Perspective Plan (1995), and the Nepal Biodiversity Action Plan (2000) and briefl y outlines how these programmes would benefi t from utilis- ing the potential of the Potential Vegetation Map. Chapter 8 discusses how the power of the Potential Vegetation Map can be increased by utilising the map and by incorporating more information into the system by establishment of a cross-sectoral Board to spearhead the continuous updating

publication date

  • 2005