- March 4, 2022
- Posted by: admin1
- Category: DPN Topics
Context- The State government of Tamil Nadu on Thursday urged the High Court to grant four weeks for issuing a draft notiﬁcation to notify 100 wetlands under the Wetlands (Conservation and Management) Rules of 2017.
- The State government had also sent proposals to the Centre to declare 13 wetlands in the State as protected sites under the Ramsar Convention.
- The proposed 13 wetlands included
- Kanji- rankulam,
- Vedanthangal and
- Karikili bird sanctuaries.
Wetlands (Conservation and Management) Rules of 2017:
- The guidelines clarified that all wetlands, irrespective of their location, size, ownership, biodiversity, or ecosystem services values, can be notified under the Wetlands Rules 2017, except river channels, paddy fields, human-made waterbodies specifically constructed for drinking water, aquaculture, salt production, recreation, irrigation purposes, wetlands falling within areas covered under the Indian Forest Act, 1927, Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980, Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 and the Coastal Regulation Zone Notification, 2011.
- The rules stipulates for setting up of National Wetlands Committee (NWC), headed by MoEFCC Secretary, to monitor implementation of these rules and oversee work carried out by States.
- NCW will also advise Central Government on appropriate policies and action for conservation and wise use of wetlands, recommend designation of wetlands of international importance under Ramsar Convention, advise on collaboration with international agencies on issues related to wetlands etc.
- It stipulates setting up of State Wetlands Authority (SWA) in each State/UTs headed by State’s environment minister and include range of government officials.
- SWA will develop comprehensive list of activities to be regulated and permitted within notified wetlands and their zone of influence.
- The rules prohibit activities like conversion of wetland for non-wetland uses including encroachment of any kind, setting up and expansion of industries, waste dumping and discharge of untreated wastes and effluents from industries, cities, towns, villages and other human settlements.
- Digital inventory of all wetlands: Mandatory for state authorities to prepare list of all wetlands and list of wetlands to be notified within six months.
What are Wetlands?
- Wetland is transitional land between terrestrial and aquatic eco-systems where water table is usually at or near surface or it may be land covered by shallow water.
- It supports rich biodiversity and provides wide range of ecosystem services such as water storage, water purification, flood mitigation, erosion control, aquifer recharge etc.
- An estimated 63% of the country’s geographical area is made up of wetlands.
- In India, 26 wetlands are identified as wetlands of international importance under the Ramsar Convention.
*** For further information refer to DPN 05 February 2022.