Draft Notification declaring Eco Sensitive Area in the Western Ghats states
The Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) had constituted a High Level Working Group (HLWG) vide office order dated 17.08.2012. The HLWG was required to:
a. Examine the WGEEP Report in a holistic and multidisciplinary fashion
b. Interact with the representatives and stakeholders of the six states of the Western Ghats region
c. Suggest to the government a further course of action on the WGEEP Report
d. Submit an action plan to implement the WGEEP Report in the most effective and holistic manner
The High Level Working Group had submitted its report to the MoEF on 15.04.2013. The MoEF then accepted this report “in principle” on 20.12.2013.
The High Level Working Group had identified approximately thirty-seven percent of the Western Ghats
as ecologically sensitive which covers an area of 59,940 sq. km. of natural landscape of Western Ghats and represents a continuous band of natural vegetation extending over a horizontal distance of 1,500 km and is spread across six states of the Western Ghats region namely, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Goa, Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu and includes Protected Areas and World Heritage Sites of the Western Ghats. The High Level Working Group has recommended prohibition or regulation of identified projects and activities in the Ecologically Sensitive Area which have maximum interventionist and destructive impacts on ecosystems.
Kerala state reviewed the ESA marked by the HLWG and requested reduction of ESA for Kerala. Thus, the total Ecologically Sensitive Area for Western Ghats region works out to 56, 825 sq. km, for which on 10.03.2014 a draft notification was issued by the MoEF, declaring Ecologically Sensitive Area in Western Ghats in the states of Gujarat, Maharashtra, Goa, Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu.
The said draft notification shall be taken into consideration on or after the expiry of a period of sixty days from the date on which copies of the Gazette of India containing this notification are made available to the public [10.03.2014].
Any person interested in making any objections or suggestions on the proposals contained in the draft notification may forward the same in writing, for consideration of the Central Government within the period so specified to the Secretary, Ministry of Environment and Forests, Paryavaran Bhawan, CGO Complex, Lodi Road, New Delhi-110003, or at e-mail address: email@example.com
Link to the draft notification