HIMALAYAN ECOLOGY (Syllabus: GS Paper 3 - Env & Eco)

News-CRUX-10     16th August 2023        

Context: The Centre and governments of Himalayan states should focus on sanitation systems in the Himalayas as well besides taking stock of wanton illegal construction and heavy tourist inflow, an analysis by Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), a Delhi-based think tank, has urged.

Key Points

  • An analysis of a few destinations with high influx of tourists in Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh and Sikkim by CSE shows that most Himalayan towns do not have sewerage systems.
  • CSE’s analysis comes even as a parliamentary panel stated in its report on August 10, 2023, that the Himalayas are under a lot of strain due to tourism and illegal construction.
  • In its 135th report tabled in the Rajya Sabha, the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Science and Technology, Environment Forest and Climate Change stressed the need for a thorough examination of the illegal structures in the ecologically fragile region in coordination with local authorities and strict action against illegal construction to prevent tragedies akin to the ones experienced in Kedarnath in 2013 and Joshimath earlier this year.
  • It recommended that the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change “should prepare a practical and implementable action plan with clear timelines to put a check on ecologically destructive activities,”.
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