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Day 56 – Q 3.Examine the factors behind the stressed ecosystems of the coastal zones in India. What steps have been taken to address it? Discuss.

3. Examine the factors behind the stressed ecosystems of the coastal zones in India. What steps have been taken to address it? Discuss. 

भारत में तटीय क्षेत्रों के तनावग्रस्त पारिस्थितिक तंत्र के पीछे कारकों की जांच करें। इसे संबोधित करने के लिए क्या कदम उठाए गए हैं? चर्चा करें।


India’s coastal zone is endowed with abundant coastal and marine ecosystems that include a wide range of mangroves, coral reefs, sea grasses, salt marshes, mud flats, estuaries, lagoons, and unique marine and coastal flora and fauna.


Coastal ecosystems also contribute to the national economy by providing employment opportunities like in fisheries. In spite of their significance, India’s coastal areas have not received adequate protection and are under stress.

  • About 34% of India’s mangroves were destroyed during 1950-2000.
  • Almost all coral areas are threatened.
  • Marine fish stocks are declining and several species of ornamental fish and sea cucumbers are fast disappearing.

Various causes for such a situation are

  • Natural: natural catastrophic events like cyclones, tsunamis which lead to destruction of coastal biodiversity.
  • Anthropogenic: sedimentation from developmental activities, eutrophication from sewage and agriculture, pollution from industrial sources, physical impact of maritime activities- dredging and destructive fishing practices, introduction of invasive species, unregulated tourism, oil spills and climate change.

Measures taken:

  • Under the National Coastal Management Programme, Ministry of Environment, Government of India is implementing a Reengineered Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) Notification 2011 to ensure livelihood security to fishing and other local communities, to conserve and protect coastal stretches and to promote development based on scientific principles.
  • Notification on Island Protection Zone is also being implemented for similar purposes for the islands of Andaman & Nicobar and the Lakshadweep.
  • Implementation of World Bank Assisted Integrated Coastal Zone Management Project.
  • Marine protected areas.


Degradation and depletion of coastal ecosystem will impact the livelihood, health and well-being of the coastal population, affecting in turn prospects for India’s sustained economic growth. There is a need for integrated development planning balancing development with the protection of vulnerable ecosystems.

Best answer: Sumit Bishnoi

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