Mining of state sand bar requires the centers approval

Due to the inadequate supply of sand for construction purposes, the state government will urge the center to grant permission for sand mining. The shortage is a result of the ban imposed on extraction of sand in the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) areas in Goa, due to the (CRZ) Notification, 2011 and 2019.  It also includes a set of guidelines that propagate sustainable sand extraction in accordance with dry riverbed mining in the non-coastal parts of the country.

The Union ministry of environments office memorandum (OM) prevents the removal and mining of sand bars in Goa. However, the state has carried out a thorough environmental impact assessment (EIA) in regard with the sand extraction in Goa.

Sand is accessible in specific estuaries and CRZ areas located in the state, as  mentioned by the National Institute of Oceanography (NIO) in its report. A senior officer urged the centre to initiate an amendment of the CRZ notification and permit the mining of sand in Goa on the basis of this report. A request was also put forward regarding the permission of manual sand extraction beyond the water table, by amending the sustainable sand mining guidelines.

To arrive at a solution regarding the shortage of sand for construction, a meeting will be held with Chief Minister Dr Pramod Sawant, Union environment minister Bhupendra Yadav and environment minister Aleixo Sequeira.

In a letter to the centre the Chief minister said “NIO reports show that the majority of the sand deposits are in the salinity-influenced areas of Chapora, Mandovi and Zuari. Considering the peculiar case of Goa as highlighted in the NIO report and also considering the customary rights of the local population and extraction only by manual method amendments are being sought in the CRZ notification, 2011 and 2019 and sustainable sand mining guidelines, 2016 and 2020. My state is facing an issue with sand extraction as sand is only available in the estuarine stretches of the rivers. In my state, sand extraction has been carried out by manual methods by local communities for many decades. However, with orders by various courts, it is mandatory to obtain environment clearance for such activities.”





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