|The Expert Appraisal Committee (EAC) of the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) has deferred a proposal submitted by the Kamarajar Port, Ennore, for the reconsideration of environmental and CRZ clearance for the development of facilities in the port.|
In view of the representations received and forwarded to the committee chairman and members, the EAC, at its 25th meeting, recommended that a sub-committee consisting of K. Gowrappan and Ayi Vaman N. Acharya be deputed to visit the site and give a report for further deliberations. Therefore, the committee deferred the proposal.
The present expansion proposals as part of the Phase III Master Plan projects include an automobile export/import terminal, container terminal, bulk terminal, multi cargo berth and marine liquid terminal.
Activists have, for a while, expressed concerns about the developmental activities at the port and its effect on the Ennore creek and Kosasthalayar river.
Pooja Kumar of the Coastal Resource Centre said that the ongoing developmental projects at the port had led to the dumping of dredge material on salt pans belonging to the Ennore creek, which had raised serious environmental concerns.
“The move by the EAC to call for a site inspection is welcome and we will also request them to ensure that the sub-committee is accessible and meets all stakeholders, including fishermen, residents nearby and former workers of the port,” she said.
Following activists highlighting concerns about the Ennore port area, actor Kamal Haasan in October visited the area and interacted with the residents of Kattukuppam to understand the ecological destruction of the Kosasthalaiyar.