Considering that mangroves have been fast depleting due to shore-based development, Visakhapatnam based Forest Research Centre for Coastal Ecosystem (FRCCE) has initiated a research study. Based on the findings by FRCCE, the committee has formulated a strategy for planting mangroves along the 114 km Vizag coastline.
FRCCE comes under the Hyderabad-based body, the Institute of Forest Biodiversity (IFB), that is affiliated to the Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education (ICFRE) under the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change. Reportedly, the study and research are being funded by the Dehradun based institute, ICFRE. The study will be conducted during the next three years.
Noted and senior scientist, Dr. S Chakrabarti from FRCCE, Dr. B Nagarajan from IFGTB Coimbatore, and marine biologist, T Srinivas, will be part of the research team that will formulate a strategy for planting mangroves along Vizag coastline.
Mangrove ecosystems support many species to thrive, absorb carbon dioxide and help tackle beach erosion. To a large extent, these ecosystems protect the mainland from being engulfed by seawater, soil erosion and control the water salinity of the coastline. Mangroves also help mitigate the extent of the damage along the coast from natural disasters like cyclones.
It should be noted that according to a 2019 report of the Forest Survey of India, Vizag has very less mangrove cover. With the depleting green cover in the District, several attempts are being made to revive the green pastures. In 2016, around 100 acres of land has been identified for setting up India’s first exclusive Centre for Mangroves and Coastal Ecology, under the Institute of Forest Biodiversity which is under the aegis of the Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education (ICFRE).