India’s extensive coastline, stretching over 7,500 kilometers, holds immense resource potential and strategic significance. This potential includes fisheries, trade routes, biodiversity, and renewable energy prospects. However, the long coastline also faces challenges in terms of natural hazard preparedness.
Resource potentials of the long Indian coastline:
- Fishery and Aquaculture: India ranks 3rd in fish production globally.
- Tourism and Recreation: Popular tourist destinations include Goa, Kerala, and Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
- Energy: Offshore wind energy in the Gulf of Mannar and tidal energy along the western coast.
- Mineral Resources: Mumbai High Salt Pan, Toothikudi (TN), and India being the third-largest salt producer country.
- Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services: Mangroves and coral reefs provide protection against natural hazards like tsunamis.
Status of natural hazard preparedness in coastal areas:
- Early Warning Systems: Central Relief Commissioner receives information through the Meteorological Department’s early warning and forecasting systems.
- Infrastructure Resilience: Projects like the National Cyclone Risk Mitigation Project (NCRMP) and the Coastal Disaster Risk Reduction Project (CDRRP) aim to build coastal resilience.
- Disaster Preparedness: State authorities have improved evacuation and response measures, reducing fatalities during cyclones.
- Coastal Vulnerability Assessments: Studies have been conducted to identify vulnerable regions and inform mitigation strategies.
- Climate Change Adaptation: Coastal Regulation Zone Notification, 2018, aims to promote economic growth while respecting the coastal environment. copyright©iasexpress.net
Despite these efforts, coastal regions in India still face challenges in terms of natural hazard preparedness. Rapid urbanization, high population densities, and climate change impacts exacerbate the vulnerability of these areas. To ensure the sustainable development of India’s coastline, it is crucial to continue investing in early warning systems, infrastructure resilience, disaster preparedness, vulnerability assessments, and climate change adaptation measures.