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40% of Indian coast subjected to coastal erosion: Govt

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

The government today said a study has revealed that on an average around 40 per cent of Indian coast is subjected to coastal erosion.

"The study has revealed that on an average around 40 per cent of the Indian coast is subjected to coastal erosion (either high, medium or low). According to the study, erosion occurred in 46.30 per cent of coastal length in Gujarat," Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar told the Lok Sabha in a written reply.

He said the Ministry of Environment and Forest, through the National Centre for Sustainable Coastal Management, Chennai, in association with Institute of Ocean Management, Anna university, Chennai, has conducted a study regarding 'assessment of shoreline change for the entire coast of mainland India, extending from Gujarat in the west coast to West Bengal in the east coast'.

He said the shoreline change was assessed for a period of 38 years from 1972 to 2010.

Accordingly, the coastline of India has been classified into high, medium and low erosion stretches as well as stable coastline stretch.

Replying to another question, he said on the basis of a national-level assessment of biodiversity richness using geospatial data on 1:50000 scale, a biological richness map for the country has been generated.

As per the study, North Eastern India, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, part of Western Ghats and some patches of Eastern Ghats have maximum biological richness, he said.

He said the financial grants released under some of the programmes for protecting biodiversity during 2013-14 are Rs 6.06 crore released under Biosphere Reserve Scheme, Rs 66.78 crore released for protection and conservation of wildlife and its habitat under Integrated Development of Wildlife Habitats and Rs 4.6 crore for conservation and management of mangrooves and coral reefs.

He said India has signed the Nagoya Protocol on Access and Benefit Sharing on May 11, 2011 and ratified it on October 9, 2012.

The Nagoya Protocol, by promoting the use of genetic resources and associated traditional knowledge, will create incentives to conserve biodiversity, sustainably use its components and enhance the contribution of biodiversity to sustainable development.

Hence India, as a country rich in biodiversity, is likely to gain from benefits arising out of the use of its accessed genetic recourses, he said.

First Published: Wed, August 06 2014. 16:51 IST