May 5, 2009 12:47:01 am
Gujarats coastline is in for a major makeover. The Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF),Government of India,has chosen the state,along with West Bengal and Orissa,for implementing the Integrated Coastal Zone Management Project (ICZMP). The Project,to be funded by the World Bank,will promote an integrated multi-sectoral and multi-disciplinary approach for coastal zone management based on the recommendations of the Swaminathan Committee (February 2005).
Gujarat Ecology Commission (GEC),Gandhinagar,has been declared as the nodal agency for implementation of the project,while the Gulf of Kutch is the area identified for the same. The estimated project cost is around Rs 270 crore for a period of 5 years.
C H Pandya,Director,GEC,said: The four major components under the ICZMP include natural resources conservation and management,coastal water monitoring and pollution embankment,socio-economic upliftment of the coastal communities and capacity building of various environmental agencies,NGOs and communities.
GEC also informed that for implementing the pilot project,six agencies have been chosen and the process of final appraisal of various proposals will take place during June-July 2009 by the World Bank. The proposals include a project by the GEC on restoration and conservation of mangroves along the Gulf of Kutch. Also,Marine National Park,Jamnagar has proposed mangrove plantation,coral transplantation and eco-development activities in the villages around it for conservation of the marine eco-system.
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To add to this,the Gujarat Pollution Control Board has proposed to monitor pollution in the coastal waters of Kutch. Gujarat Ecological Educational and Research Foundation,Gandhinagar will develop infrastructure for research on coral transplantation,while Bhaskaracharya Institute of Space Applications for Geoinformatics,Gandhinagar has proposed a project regarding integration of Geo-spatial Information System to monitor the status of mangroves in the coastal shelter belts. The Jamnagar Municipal Corporation has also initiated a project for building a sewage treatment plant with the capacity of 91 million litres per day to reduce pollution in the sea by 90 per cent.
Pandya also informed that a pre-feasibility study is being carried out by the GEC to establish a Marine Oceanarium under public-private partnership model near Dwarka,to create awareness among pilgrims visiting Dwarkadhish Temple as well as local communities,school children and other stakeholders.
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