Kathmandu, April 30
The World Wildlife Fund is preparing to establish the first timber treatment plant of the country to combat the rising demand for timber post 2015 earthquakes.
According to a government report, the country needs 47,860,754 cubic feet of timber to reconstruct houses, monuments, and all other structures that were destroyed during the earthquakes in 31 districts. The government has set a target to complete reconstruction work in five years.
Senior Director, Policy and Outreach at WWF, Santosh Mani Nepal said, “The country has not been able to meet the demand for fresh timber, particularly of saal trees, which has affected the reconstruction process. We are working hard to set up timber treatment plant at the earliest.”
The major cause of the decaying of timber is termite infestation. In the treatment plant, termites are exterminated from the infected timber by feeding them indigestible wood, and the timber’s wood cells quickly tighten and reverse the damage, Nepal said.
Nepal said that engineers working at the reconstruction process have consulted with WWF regarding the use of treated timber after WWF began preparing for this project.
He said that it takes only half-an-hour to treat infected timber in the treatment plant. He added that though the treatment process is expensive, the WWF will only charge Rs 5 per cubic foot of timber for the treatment.
The treatment plant will be installed in Panchkhal and locals will be trained to operate the plant themselves. The local forest user group will be given management responsibility once the plant is established and the locals learn how to operate the plant.
A version of this article appears in print on May 01, 2017 of The Himalayan Times.