India’’s long coastline of 7517 km is rich in varied resources which can harnessed for development of blue economy.
- Shale deposits along coasts of Gujarat, TN and Andhra Pradesh
- Rich Methane Hydrate deposits along the KG Basin. (Not yet harnessed).
Renewable Energy Potential:
- Significant wind energy potential (665 GW) along with offshore wind.
- Tropical coasts of India have vast solar energy potential.
- Tidal energy and OTEC
- Monazite sands and critical minerals important for India’s nuclear energy security.
- Placer deposits rich in titanium and gold along coasts
- Salt production and export principally in Gujarat.
- Sand and construction material from coasts.
- Rich in fisheries – Rich source of protein and exports.
- Seaweeds for food and fertilisers.
Though India has rich resources along its coastal areas, we have not been able to succesfully harness them due to technological, policy and financial bottlenecks. There is a need for a comprehensive Blue Economy Policy for harness these resources.
Natural Hazard Preparedness in coastal areas:
India’s coastal areas suffer from the following natural disasters: Cyclone, Tsunami, Storm surges, coastal erosion. Climate change is increasing the intensity and frequency of natural hazards in coastal areas and sea level rise leading to risk of submergence of coastal areas.
Steps taken for Preparedness:
- Legal framework: Disaster Management Act, 2005 provides framework for handling of natural disaster among NDMA at Central Level, SDMA at State Level and District Magistrate at Local level.
Early warning systems:
|Name of disaster||Early Warning System|
|Storm Surge||By INCOIS|
|Coastal Erosion||National Centre for Coastal Research|
- Guidelines: NDMA has developed comprehensive guidelines for Tsunami and Cyclones but similar guidelines have not yet been developed for other hazards in the coastal areas such as storm surges.
- National Cyclone Risk Mitigation Project aims to undertake structural and non-structural measures to mitigate effects of cyclones in coastal areas.
- Odisha has developed ‘Odisha model’ of handling cyclones.
- National Centre for Coastal Research monitors the shoreline changes through satellites.
- INCOIS has developed Coastal Vulnerability Index for Indian Coastline.
- MOEFCC has developed Coastal Regulation Zone Notification, 2019 to conserve and protect coastal stretches.
- Other measures: Promotion Mangrove and shelterbelt plantations in coastal areas, awareness among fishermen and coastal communities etc.
Thus, to sustainable harness the resource potential there is a need for develop a comprehensive policy framework for addressing coastal disasters in line with Sendai Framework of Disaster Management.