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Business News/ News / India/  PM flags off two schemes to revive wetlands, mangroves

New Delhi: In a move to revive wetlands and mangroves across the country, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday launched two schemes named Amrit Dharohar and MISHTI (Mangrove Initiative for Shoreline Habitats and Tangible Incomes).

India currently has 75 Ramsar sites that are wetlands of international importance and designated under the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands.

In the last nine years, the number of wetlands and Ramsar sites in India have increased almost three times, PM Modi said.

The launch of Amrit Dharohar Yojana on World Environment Day will ensure conservation of the existing Ramsar sites through public participation, and these Ramsar sites will become centres of eco-tourism and a source of green jobs for thousands of people, he said.

Underlining that India has created a balance of present requirements and future vision, PM Modi stated that necessary help has been provided to the poorest of the poor people while huge steps have been taken keeping in mind the energy needs of the future.

“During the last nine years, India has made an unprecedented focus on green and clean energy. India started Mission Green Hydrogen and took major steps towards natural farming to save soil and water from chemical fertilizers."

MISHTI scheme will help in reviving and protecting the mangrove ecosystem in the country.

With this, the mangrove cover will be restored in nine states across the country and help in mitigating the threat to lives and livelihoods in coastal areas from rising sea levels and disasters like cyclones.

In the 2023-24 budget, Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced Amrit Dharohar and MISHTI schemes to protect vital wetlands that sustain aquatic biodiversity and mangrove plantations along the coastline and on salt pan lands.

While Amrit Dharohar aims to achieve sustainable ecosystem development with the help of local communities over the next three years, MISHTI envisages to comprehensively explore the possible area for the development of mangroves covering nearly 540 sq km, spreading across 11 states and two union territories over five years, starting from FY2023-24.

The primary objectives of the MISHTI scheme are the sharing of best practices on plantation techniques, management practices, conservation measures and resource mobilization through the public-private partnership route.

The Centre covers 80% of the project cost, while state governments contribute the remaining 20%.

India accounts for about 3% of South Asia’s mangroves. Apart from the Sundarbans in West Bengal, the Andamans region, the Kachchh and Jamnagar areas in Gujarat have substantial mangrove cover.

Modi said India started working on two levels to get rid of single-use plastic in 2018.

“On one hand, we have banned single-use plastic and on the other hand, plastic waste processing has been made mandatory," PM Modi said.

Due to this, there has been a compulsory recycling of about 3 million tonnes of plastic packaging in India, which is 75%of the total annual plastic waste produced in India, and around 10,000 producers, importers and brands have come under its ambit till date, the prime minister said.

He said Mission LiFE (Lifestyle for Environment) is spreading a new consciousness about lifestyle changes to combat climate change.

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Puja Das
Puja Das is a New Delhi based policy reporter covering food, farm, fertiliser, water, and climate policies for Mint. Puja reports on farmers' distress and how the agriculture sector is impacting India's rural economy and policy initiatives to help meet the pledges made at COP27. Puja holds a post-graduation degree in Broadcast Journalism from the Indian Institute of Journalism & New Media, Bangalore.
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Updated: 05 Jun 2023, 10:59 PM IST
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