Image used for representational purposes. (Photo | EPS)
Image used for representational purposes. (Photo | EPS)

Tamil Nadu coastal restoration mission launched with World Bank support

Out of a total of Rs 1,675 crore, World Bank assistance is 1,172.5 crore (70%) and Tamil Nadu's share will be Rs 502.5 crore.

CHENNAI: The State government on Thursday launched its fourth ambitious climate change mitigation mission called "Tamil Nadu Sustainably Harnessing Ocean Resources and Blue Economy (TN-SHORE), also known as Tamil Nadu Coastal Restoration Mission. With assistance from the World Bank, the State would be pumping in a whopping Rs 1,675 crore over the next five years to arrest sea erosion, reduce marine pollution and conserve marine biodiversity.

A G.O. in this regard was issued by Supriya Sahu, Additional Chief Secretary, Environment, Climate Change and Forests Department. Chief Minister MK Stalin has made multiple references to this mission during public forums but is taking shape now.

Under the mission, the government will set up a special purpose vehicle "Tamil Nadu Blue Carbon Agency" to ensure dedicated and focused attention on overseeing the preservation and restoration of targeted coastal ecosystems, including mangroves, seagrass and salt marshes. This initiative will not only enhance ecosystem services but will also create a framework for trading carbon credits.

Supriya Sahu told TNIE that the government will make sure the primary beneficiaries of carbon credits will be the local communities. As per the G.O., the mission has five components or thematic prioritised investment areas, which include enhancing coastal biodiversity that was given a budgetary allocation of Rs 770. Under this component, the Biodiversity Conservation Park at Kadambur in Chengalpattu will be built at a cost of Rs 345 cr, and coastal wetlands like Palikaranai will be carried out costing Rs 275 cr.

The other investment areas include coastal projection, improving livelihoods, pollution abatement and project management. Riding on the success of the restoration of Vaan Island in the Gulf of Mannar, the government has identified a few more islands in the Gulf for erosion control and coral restoration.

Similarly, the Meendum Manjappai initiative will be advanced to boost plastic circularity.

Restoration worth Rs 40 cr planned in Ennore Creek

Meanwhile, the Ennore Creek, which has faced the brunt of multiple disasters the latest being an oil spill, will be restored at a cost of Rs 40 cr.

The entire mission will be monitored by Tamil Nadu Green Climate Company. Out of a total of Rs 1,675 cr, World Bank assistance is 1,172.5 cr (70%) and Tamil Nadu's share will be Rs 502.5 cr. For effective implementation, the government also accorded approval for an amount of Rs 100 cr earmarked towards the establishment of a Special Project Monitoring Unit and a high-powered steering committee is constituted headed by the chief secretary, the G.O. says.

Carbon credit trade

The initiative will create a framework for trading of carbon credits that will benefit local communities

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