Draft regulatory framework for wetlands conservation - Comments by ATREE

Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment details the draft regulation - Wetlands Conservation and Management Rules (2009) and submits several concerns to the Ministry

The Ministry of Environment and Forests released a draft of the regulatory framework for wetland conservation - Wetlands Conservation and Management Rules (2009) for feedback from all stakeholders. The draft framework was prepared by a multi-disciplinary expert group, and final round of comments were invited till June 21st 2010.

The Wetland Conservation Team of Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment (ATREE) did a detailed analysis of the draft regulation and submitted several pertinent concerns to the Ministry. The most significant observation is that the new framework (as do much of India's policies and laws) continues to propose unjustifiable State control and interventions over the country's wetlands and livelihoods of people dependent on them. The regulation does not make any constructive suggestions or recommendations for the conservation that the country's wetlands demand, and instead brings all wetlands into complete official control by installing Central, State and District-level wetland regulatory authorities, wherein the majority of the members will be senior government officials.

ATREE expects from the MoEF that the various concerns and shortcomings in the draft regulation will be addressed, before the notification is promulgated.

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