National Centre for Sustainable Coastal Management

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Context: The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change set up the National Centre for Sustainable Coastal Management (NCSCM), Chennai to undertake studies and research in the area of Coastal Zone Management including coastal resources and environment.

Relevance:
Prelims: General issues on Environmental Ecology, Bio-diversity, and Climate Change.
Mains:

  • GS I- geographical features and their location- changes in critical geographical features (including water bodies and ice-caps) and in flora and fauna and the effects of such changes.
  • GS III-
    • Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment.
    • Disaster and disaster management.

Concerned ministry: Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change.

What is Coastal Management:

Coastal management is a defence against flooding and erosion, and techniques that stop erosion to claim lands.

Why is Sustainable Coastal Management necessary?

  • Coastal zones occupy less than 15% of the Earth's land area, while they host more than 45% of the world population.
  • Nearly 1.4 billion people live within 100 km of a shoreline and 100 m of sea level, with an average density 3 times higher than the global average for the population.
  • Both natural and human-induced changes in variables that govern coastal dynamics have a profound effect on the long-term and large-scale evolution of the coastal zone.
  • Climate change exerts pressure on the coastal zone by altering sediment supply from the hinterland and rising sea levels. Due to rising sea-levels:
    1. Hundreds of thousands of square kilometers of coastal wetlands and other lowlands could be submerged.
    2. Beaches could move back as much as a few hundred meters and protective structures may claim lives, agriculture, livestock, buildings, and infrastructures.
    3. Saltwater would advance landward into aquifers and up estuaries threatening water supplies, ecosystems and agriculture in some areas.
  • Some nations are partially vulnerable to sea-level rise, some areas could be dangerously threatened.
    • Examples include India, Bangladesh and other areas economically dependent on fisheries or sensitive to chan habitats.
  • Human activity affects the dynamics of the coastal zone as well.
    • With three-quarters of the world population expected to reside in the coastal zone by 2025, human activities originating from this small land area will impose heavy pressure on coasts.

 

  • Coastal zones contain rich resources to produce goods and services and are home to most commercial and industrial activities.
  • Protection against rising sea levels in the 21st century is crucial, as sea-level rise accelerates.
  • It’s becoming increasingly important for councils and governments to start managing coastlines in order to protect them from increasing coastal erosion and flooding due to altering sea levels.
  • The reason for coastal management is obvious, to protect homes and businesses from being damaged and even destroyed by coastal erosion or flooding.
  • Management of coastlines is also important to help protect natural habitats, however, governments generally don’t engage in coastal management where there isn’t an economic risk as effective coastal management is very expensive.
  • Failure to do so can have severe economic and social effects, especially along coastlines that are used for tourism and industry.

 

In this context, The Government's decision to establish a National Centre for Sustainable Coastal Zone Management is a welcome move. 

National Centre for Sustainable Coastal Zone Management:

  • The National Centre for Sustainable Coastal Management (NCSCM), Chennai is a research institute under the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC), Government of India with a vision to manage the Indian coast in a sustainable manner.
  • The institute undertakes studies and research in the area of Coastal Zone Management including coastal resources and environment.
  • The NCSCM is also providing scientific and technical inputs to the Integrated Coastal Zone Management Plan.

Vision and Mission of NCSCM:

  • Promote sustainable coasts through increased partnerships, conservation practices, scientific research and knowledge management for the benefit and well being of current and future generations.
  • Support integrated management of the coastal and marine environment for livelihood security, sustainable development and hazard risk management by enhancing
    1. Knowledge
    2. Research and Advisory Suppor
    3. Partnerships and Network
    4. Coastal Community Interface


Objectives of NCSCM:

  1. Strive for being a World Class Knowledge Institution related to coastal zones, environment, resources, and processes,
  2. To promote integrated and sustainable management of the coastal and marine areas in India for the benefit and wellbeing of the traditional coastal and island communities, and
  3. Advise the Union and State Governments and other associated stakeholders (s) on policy, and scientific matters related to Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM).


About ICZM:

  • Integrated Coastal Zone Management Plan(ICZM) is a World Bank-supported project.
  • The plan aims to build national capacity for the implementation of a comprehensive coastal management approach in the country in an attempt to achieve sustainability.
  • The concept was born in 1992 during the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro.
  • The specifics regarding ICZM is set out in the proceedings of the summit within Agenda 21.

Implementation of ICZM:

  • Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC) has established the Society of Integrated Coastal Management(SICOM) to implement the project at the national level and state level.
  • The National Centre for Sustainable Coastal Management (NCSCM), is providing scientific and technical inputs.
  • Till now three coastal states namely West Bengal, Gujarat, and Orissa have been selected under the ICZM plan.

Society of Integrated Coastal Management:

  • Society of Integrated Coastal Management (SICOM) has been established under the aegis of the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change.
  • It has a vision for vibrant, healthy and resilient coastal and marine environment for the continuous and enhanced outflow of benefits to the country and the coastal community.
  • SICOM is the national project management unit of India in strategic planning, management, execution, monitoring and successful implementation of the ICZMP-Phase-I.



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