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India needs to build resilience among people living in coastal areas: Union minister

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Bhupender Yadav
Image: PTI

Union Environment Minister Bhupender Yadav on Saturday said India needs to build resilience among people living in coastal areas with the changing climate across the globe.

India’s coastline is of immense strategic, economic and social importance to the country, he said.

Addressing the first National Conference on Sustainable Coastal Management in India here, the minister said, “With the changing climate, we need to build the resilience of communities living in coastal areas.” A programme on enhancing climate resilience of coastal communities is being implemented in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Odisha, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.

Supported by the Green Climate Fund (GCF), the initiative is integrating ecosystem and community-based approaches to adaptation into coastal management and planning.

Spanning 7,500 kilometres, India’s coastline is the seventh longest in the world, and is home to 20 per cent of the country’s population, he said.

“Three of our four metropolitan cities lie on the coast. There is a great diversity of ecosystems within our coastal regions that support more than 17,000 species of plants and animals,” Yadav said.

The minister also stated that the conference is being held at an important time as India has submitted its revised NDCs and seeks to create multi-sectoral partnerships to meet the targets.

Nationally determined contributions (NDCs) embody efforts by each country to reduce national emissions and adapt to the impacts of climate change.

The objective of the conference is to bring officials from all 13 coastal states of the country under one roof to focus on three interrelated themes of coastal and marine biodiversity, climate mitigation and adaptation and coastal pollution, an official said.

The endeavour is aimed at creating a vibrant network of stakeholders so that they continue to engage with each other on various topics and themes such as coastal governance, technologies and innovation as well as domestic and international finance, he said.

Data-driven policies and management frameworks, participatory conservation models, and convergence among stakeholders are the key pillars for effective coastal management, the official added.

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