The Coastal Regulation Zone Notification 2011

Along with the 25 amendments made to the CRZ Notification 1991 made till 2009, new features like special provision for specific areas and critically vulnerable areas were included. The areas included Corangi (East Godavari) and Krishna delta in AP.
According to the CRZ 2011 notification water area up to 12 nautical miles into the sea was brought under the CRZ without restricting fishing by traditional fishing communities. The concept of Coastal Zone Management Plan would be prepared with the active participation of local communities and a hazard line would be demarcated in five years.

Pollution control measures and mapping of shorelines through time-series satellite images, ensuring no further foreshore development in high eroding areas were included in the new notification.

The no development zone has been reduced from 200 M from the high tide line to 100 M to meet the increasing demand for housing for fishermen and traditional coastal communities.

It widens the definition of CRZ to include the land area from High tide line(HTL) to 500 m on the landward side, as well as the land area between HTL to 100 m or width of the creek, whichever is less, on the landward side along tidal influenced water bodies connected to the sea. The CRZ also includes, for the first time, water area up to 12 nautical miles in the sea and the entire water area of a tidal water body such as creek, river, estuary without imposing any restrictions of fishing activities.Thus, the main change in the scope of regulation has been to expand the CRZ to include territorial waters as a protected zone.

The concept of a ‘hazard line’ has been introduced. While the notification merely states that the hazard line will be demarcated by the MOEF through the Survey of India, by taking into account tides, waves, sea level rise and shoreline changes, this concept owes its introduction to the realisation of natural disasters such as tsunami and floods that may take place in this zone. In May 2010, the MOEF signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Survey of India for undertaking this exercise over a period of four-and-a-half years, at an estimated cost of Rs 125 crore.

The concept of classification of CRZ into four zones has continued in the 2011 notification with the following delineation:
CRZ I- ecologically sensitive areas such as mangroves, coral reefs, salt marshes, turtle nesting ground and the inter-tidal zone.
CRZ II- areas close to the shoreline, and which have been developed.
CRZ III- Coastal areas that are not substantially built up, including rural coastal areas.
CRZ IV- water area from LTL to the limit of territorial waters of India

CRZ IV has been changed from the 1991 notification, which covered coastal stretches in the islands of Andaman & Nicobar and Lakshwadeep. The MOEF has issued a separate notification titled Island Protection Zone 2011 in relation to these areas.

A new category called areas requiring special consideration has been created which consists of
 (i) CRZ areas of Greater Mumbai, Kerala and Goa, and 
(ii) Critically vulnerable coastal areas such as Sunderbans.

Clearances for obtaining CRZ approval have been made time-bound. Further, for the first time, post-clearance monitoring of projects has been introduced in the form of the requirement to submit half-yearly compliance reports, which are to be displayed on the Ministry’s website.

While the earlier exception was limited to those activities which required access to the water front, four other exceptions have been now incorporated which include:

1) Projects of Department of Atomic Energy;
2) Facilities for generating non-conventional energy sources and desalination plans, except for CRZ-I zones on a case-by-case basis after doing an impact assessment study;
3) Development of greenfield airport permitted only at Navi Mumbai; and
4) Reconstruction, repair works of dwelling units of local communities including fishers in accordance with local town and country planning regulations.

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