Posted on January 2, 2023
An expert appraisal committee of the Union Environment Ministry has recommended Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) clearance for desilting 176.35 acres in the Adyar river for increasing its water holding and carrying capacity.
As per the proposal submitted by the Public Works Department (PWD), desilting will be carried from the mouth to Thiru Vi Ka Bridge. A total of 4,86,100 cubic metres of silt will be removed. “The total area of the river is 231.07 acres and desilting will be carried on 176.35 acres. The island in the river covering an area of 54.72 acres is exempted from desilting. The desilting will be undertaken in the water spread area of Adyar estuary, but will not be executed in the mangroves area,” the PWD officials clarified.
The Chennai Corporation has issued a permission letter for disposing of the desilted materials of 1,90,458 cubic metres in the vacant OSR lands and 2,43,050 cubic metres of silt at the Kodungaiyur dumping ground. The remaining silt of 52,592 cubic metres will be used for bund strengthening along the river stretch. The total cost of the project is Rs 21.63 crore.
While recommending CRZ clearance, the committee has imposed several conditions which include prohibiting sand removal from the beach during the active sea turtle nesting season (January to May). Also, the dredged sand should not be used directly for beach nourishment without examining its suitability thoroughly.
The sediment grain sizes of the dredging site and the turtle nesting beach must be studied in detail by the Zoological Survey of India (ZSI) in case this sand is to be used for beach nourishment. “ZSI will provide necessary recommendations in this matter,” the committee said.