Wildlife Board panel not to consider projects in and around protected areas

Policy matters this week
Sariska Tiger Reserve, Rajasthan (Source: Vasundhara Deogawanka via IWP Flickr Photos) Sariska Tiger Reserve, Rajasthan (Source: Vasundhara Deogawanka via IWP Flickr Photos)

Panel not to consider projects until eco-zones are clearly demarcated

The standing committee of the National Board of Wildlife has decided not to consider any infrastructure or developmental projects in and around 624 wildlife sanctuaries and national parks across the country until their ecologically sensitive zones (ESZs) are clearly demarcated. The decision has been taken because despite several reminders, many states are yet to submit ESZ demarcation proposals. Demarcation of ESZs is long pending since 2006 and up till now, the final notifications on ESZs demarcation has been issued for only 32 protected areas. 

New watchdog proposed, but activists foretell dilution of NGT

The Environment Ministry has proposed for a new Adjudicating Authority that will determine the extent of environmental damage to be caused by any project. However, activists are viewing this proposal as a deliberate attempt by the Environment Ministry to suppress the National Green Tribunal, which has been pro-active in protecting the environment. Moreover, constitution of the new Authority will make it difficult for activists and aggrieved communities to approach the NGT against any project.

No construction within 200 metres along the Gangs banks in Uttarakhand: NGT

The National Green Tribunal has ordered the State Authorities not to grant permission for construction of buildings, houses, hotels or any structures within 200 metres of the Ganga banks at the highest flood line without an approval from NGT. Earlier the NGT had come out with the idea of creating a 500 metre buffer zone on the Ganga banks like Western countries for tackling river pollution. The Tribunal has also sought a report from the Ministry of Water Resources on the shortcomings of the Ganga Action Plan (GAP)-1 and Plan-2. 

Government set to revise the national policy on marine fishery

Aiming for an all-round development of the fisheries sector in the country, the Government is in the process of revising the national policy on marine fisheries. A committee has been constituted for the revision under the chairmanship of ICAR Director General and inputs are being sought from stakeholders. 

'Seal hand pumps releasing contaminated water': NGT to UP Jal Nigam

The National Green Tribunal has directed the Uttar Pradesh Jal Nigam to seal all the hand pumps which are releasing contaminated groundwater in six districts of the State. The order has been issued following a petition alleging that the contaminated groundwater in the region has caused the death of 50 villagers. The Tribunal has also constituted a committee consisting of officials from the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), UP Pollution Control Board (UPPCB), UP Government and UP Jal Nigam to submit an analysis on contaminated groundwater in the western districts of the State.

This is a roundup of important policy matters from November 2 - 9, 2015. Also read last week's news roundup.


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