Nepal's forest area is estimated to be 5.5 million ha, or 37.4 percent of the country's total area. Another 15.7 percent of the land is classified as "other land," which has the potential to be developed into forest or pasture. Shrublands, grasslands, and uncultivated areas are examples of these lands. Seasonal fires are common in Nepal in March and April to manage farmland and pastures. The fires became particularly severe in 2021, as many spread and burned uncontrollably through forests. Months of unusually dry weather have parched vegetation, turning it into tinder.Because of the unprecedented rate at which wildfires have ravaged the forests, the country continues to experience the worst air quality in recent years. Hence every year during the fire season, air pollution levels across Nepal remain extremely high for many days, affecting the region's economy and people's health.
*The ranking is based on the data published by the Department of Forests and Soil Conservation.