Gujarat coastal project to be completed in ’15

The World Bank-aided Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) project, aiming to provide solution for better management of coastal zone, is expected to be completed in Gujarat by 2015.

The pilot project, launched along with similar ones in West Bengal and Odisha, will also enable Jamnagar improve its underground sewage network along with setting up a water treatment plant of 71 million litres a day (MLD) and help proper sanitation for more than five lakh population of the coastal area off the Gulf of Kutch.

It will also improve water quality of the Gulf of Kutch through discharge of treated water, Dr S.K. Nanda, Principal Secretary, Forest and Environment, Gujarat, told reporters here on Saturday.

Under the project, for the first time, coral transplantation will be taken up in an area of 2,000 sq km, and mangrove plantation in 15,000 hectares, establishment of the Rs 100-crore sewage treatment plant in Jamnagar, eco-tourism development in the Gulf of Kutch, and setting up of a national-level institute for marine biodiversity.

The pilot project is being implemented by Gujarat Ecology Commission (GEC), the State Project Management Unit (SPMU). About two crore people, out of the State’s population of 5.5 crore, live along the 1,600-km-long coastline in Gujarat.

The three pilot projects of Gujarat, West Bengal and Odisha, which together involve an outlay of nearly Rs 830 crore, would later be expanded to include all nine coastal states in India.

While the World Bank has financed 60 per cent of funds, the Centre and the State governments have provided 30 per cent and 10 per cent respectively, he said.

In Gujarat, the project covers coastal districts of Jamnagar and Kutch and parts of Rajkot, which have been designated as ecologically sensitive areas (ESAs).

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