Navi Mumbai: No Environmental Clearance For Nerul Jetty, RTI Reveals

Navi Mumbai: No Environmental Clearance For Nerul Jetty, RTI Reveals

The water transport terminal itself has failed to take off since it was ready by December 2021 due to the in exorbitant tariff for the water taxi service.

Raina AssainarUpdated: Saturday, July 06, 2024, 01:27 AM IST
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Navi Mumbai: No Environmental Clearance For Nerul Jetty, RTI Reveals | FPJ

The City and Industrial Development Corporation (CIDCO) of Maharashtra has not obtained the mandatory environmental clearance from the state government for the construction of the Rs148 crore passenger water transport terminal in Nerul, RTI information reveals, claim the environmentalists from Navi Mumbai.

This is a major violation since the construction into the sea requires Coastal Regulatory Zone (CRZ) clearance, said environment watchdog NatConnect Foundation director B N Kumar.

The document signed by Environment Director Abhay Pimparkar stated that ‘The State Environmental Impact Assessment Authority (SEIAA) Maharashtra has not provided any environment clearance to CIDCO for the construction of a jetty for water transport between Navi Mumbai and Mumbai,’ stated Kumar. The non-profit platform sought the information given the previous violations that have come to light in the water transport terminal, adjoining the DPS Flamingo Lake, which witnessed a series of flamingo deaths.

The CIDCO has obtained conditional clearance only for the diversion of 0.46-hectare mangroves from the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MOEFCC) and not for the construction as such, Kumar said quoting the official records.

The MOEFCC permission stipulated that the work should not hamper the free flow of tidal water and the state forest department too issued an order to that effect. Moreover, the CIDCO itself gave an undertaking confirming the pre-condition.

Yet, the tidal water flow to the DPS Lake was blocked in the construction of the road to the jetty. Coupled with the summer heat, the lake was rendered dry due to which flamingos missed their favourite food, the algae. During the last week of April this year, several flamingos got disoriented, possibly in search of food, and died.

“It was in this context that NatConnect began collecting information about the environmental issues surrounding the lake and the jetty and now we have all key facts, officially confirmed,” Kumar said and called for fixing the accountability.

The western zonal bench of the National Green Tribunal (NGT) is slated to take up the flamingo death issue on July 17 after the principal bench took suo motu cognisance of media reports on the environmental tragedy, NatConnect said.

The water transport terminal itself has failed to take off since it was ready by December 2021 due to the in exorbitant tariff for the water taxi service. The half-a-km stretch from the end of the DPS school to the jetty has now turned into an unofficial jogger and walkers’ track. Neighbouring residents are also seen taking their pets for poop walks, Kumar added.

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