Mumbai: Acting on SOS Wetlands at Navi Golf Course, Center Says | Bombay News

Navi Mumbai: Acknowledging concerns from environmentalists over the destruction of NRI and TS Chanakya wetlands in Nerul for a golf course, the Center called on the state’s environment department to take action “as a matter of priority.” In the meantime, a new complaint has been sent to the forestry department regarding the destruction of mangroves near Moraj Circle, Palm Beach Road.
Environmentalists reiterated that by saving these flamingo sites, the birds will not be able to deviate their flight paths to the next Navi Mumbai airport, thus avoiding accidents. They drew the attention of the Union’s Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC) that the destruction of wetlands would be detrimental to future airport flights. MoEFCC official Mr Ramesh wrote to the environment department about it, NatConnect Foundation director BN Kumar said.
The MoEFCC cleared the airport project on the basis of certain conditions, including a bird study to be conducted in consultation with the Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS), said Sunil Agrawal of the Save Navi Mumbai Wetlands forum.
Repeated BNHS studies have warned of the destruction of wetlands, which are the destination of hundreds of thousands of migratory and local birds. Kumar called for a commission of inquiry into Cidco’s “bad certification” that water bodies are not wetlands, on the basis of which the Maharashtra Coastal Zone Management Authority (MCZMA) granted environmental clearance for the golf course project.
NatConnect obtained a copy of the environmental clearance via the RTI route. Mr Ramesh has now called on the state to take action on the environmentalists’ complaints. He also called on the State Wetlands Authority to take “necessary measures” and to inform the Center. The Forestry Department admitted in its affidavit to the Bombay High Court, when hearing a petition from Agrawal and others, that the two wetlands were included in the national wetland assessment inventory. prepared by the Ahmedabad-based Space Application Center, Kumar said.
HC had ordered the golf course project to be abandoned, but Cidco and the private developer went to the Supreme Court with separate motions. Despite waiting for a decision from the SC, the project has recently received approval from Rera, lamented Agrawal.


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