The report of the expert committee on the draft Coastal Management Zone notification, titled: Final Frontier, Agenda to protect the ecosystem and habitat of India’s coast for conservation and livelihood security, was delivered to the Ministry of Environment and Forest (MoEF) on 16 July 2009. The expert committee was chaired by M.S. Swaminathan and included Shailesh Nayak, Secretary, Ministry of Earth Sciences; J.M. Mauskar, Additional Secretary, MoEF, and Sunita Narain, Director, Centre for Science and Environment (CSE).
The full report can be viewed here.
The summary of the recommendations are:
- Let the CMZ Notification, 2008 lapse and incorporate amendments as recommended in the existing CRZ Notification, 1991 for better coastal management.
- Check violations to CRZ through improved space technology-enabled enforcement, strengthened institutions, and regulatory and legal reform.
- Enhance protection to fishing communities and families for habitat and livelihood security through amendments in the CRZ Notification.
- Resolve issues regarding the development and redevelopment of Mumbai, based on locale-specific amendments.
- Introduce regulations to manage the proliferation of ports along the coasts with possible impacts on the coastline by considering cumulative impacts of these developments.
- Introduce tighter standards for disposal of effluents into coastal waters so that these waters do not become cheaper alternatives to inland pollution management.
- Introduce new management regimes in the Andaman and Nicobar as well as Lakshadweep Islands after deliberation and discussion.
- Introduce any new protection regime – such as critically vulnerable coastal areas – after careful and deliberate understanding of the impact of conservation policies on local communities, particularly fisher families.
- Strengthen protection to mangroves based on clear definitions.
- Include the seaward side to ensure protection from current and future threats, but with safeguards to ensure there is no restriction to livelihoods of fishing communities.
- Introduce measures to greatly strengthen research and regulatory capacity at all levels.
- Introduce policies to cope with and adapt to the future dangers from sea level rise and increased vulnerability of the coasts.