Stop farming on Yamuna floodplains by 2020: NGT to DDA

Policy matters this week
Yamuna river in Delhi (Source: Sudhanshu Malhotra via IWP Flickr Photos) Yamuna river in Delhi (Source: Sudhanshu Malhotra via IWP Flickr Photos)

NGT orders DDA to ensure farming on the Yamuna floodplains is stopped by 2020

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has ordered the Delhi Development Authority to ensure that farming of fruit and vegetables on the Yamuna floodplains is stopped and the area is restored into a biodiversity area. The tribunal also warned the DDA that it would be liable to pay Rs 5 lakh per month from 1st April 2020, if it failed to meet its directive. The order comes following reports released by NEERI and CPCB, saying that while the former found high doses of lead in vegetables, the latter revealed that the excessive use of fertilisers and pesticides by farmers on the Yamuna floodplains is contributing to poisoning of the Yamuna’s water, its floodplains and groundwater. (Hindustan Times)

Centre grants green nod to expansion of atomic plant in Western Ghats

The environment ministry has given its approval for capacity expansion of two units of the Kaiga Atomic Power Project and the construction of additional accommodation in the existing township in Karnataka’s Karwar taluk in the ecologically fragile Western Ghats. The region has been categorised as an ecologically sensitive zone-1 (ESZ-1) and the panel headed by noted ecologist Madhav Gadgil in 2011 had recommended that no mining and thermal power plants be allowed in such areas. Moroever, the proceedings of the public hearing conducted for the project in December 2018 shows that the local people had strong reservations about the project. (Hindustan Times)

16-member panel appointed to restore Cauvery river

On the lines of Namami Gange, the Tamil Nadu government will be implementing the ambitious Nadanthai Vaazhi Cauvery to restore the Cauvery river and its tributaries. A 16-member multi-disciplinary committee has been appointed for the project. The members have been drawn from water resources, municipal administration and water supply, rural development, environment and forests, TWAD Board, TN water investment company, revenue administration and disaster management. The new committee will work towards biodiversity conservation, afforestation, cleaning of river surface, setting up sewage treatment plants (STPs), riverfront development and rejuvenation of the river and its main tributaries - Bhavani, Amaravathi and Noyyal. (The Times of India)

Plug leakage in Srinagar hydel project water channel: NGT

The National Green Tribunal has ordered the Alaknanda Hydro Power Company to plug a leakage in the underground channel of Srinagar Hydroelectric Project at Supada village in Tehri district, Uttarakhand. The direction follows a petition filed by Uttarakhand resident Uttam Singh Bhandari seeking proper measures to be taken to plug the leakage from the power plant channel and ensure the safety of the lives of residents of Mangsu, Surasu and NaurThaapli villages. The plea mentioned the serious breach that took place in 2015 in the canal, causing damage to crops and houses. After the breach, an enquiry report recommended re-strengthening the power channel and investigating the structural design, but in the absence of requisite action, there was another serious breach in December 2018. (Republic Tv)

Mumbai civic body fails to prepare flood-risk zone maps even after 2005 flood deluge: SC panel

As per a report of from a Supreme Court-appointed committee, the BMC and Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) did not prepare flood-risk zone maps even 12 years after the 2005 deluge caused by an overflowing Mithi river. The committee submitted its report to the apex court in March 2018, observing that instead of a trapezoidal section that was suggested for widening the Mithi, a rectangular section was adopted, which reduced the river’s carrying capacity. Moreover, the development of a 50 metre no-development zone on either side of the river, as recommended by NEERI, was not implemented. Although BMC and MMRDA claimed to have taken up flood-mitigation measures, despite the steps taken, the Mithi has breached its banks thrice already this year. (The Times of India)

This is a roundup of important policy matters from September 10 - 16, 2019. Also, read news this week.

 

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