The Rs. 238-crore project to stop sea erosion at Ullal may be monitored by a non-governmental organisation (NGO), if a condition laid down by the funding agency, Asian Development Bank, is implemented.

The technical assistance consultant's report, commissioned by ADB, has proposed a set of assurances and conditions, including an assurance from the Government that it would establish a working group with an NGO as its member to support the project. It has said this condition should be incorporated in the Framework Financing Agreement (FFA) and also the individual loan agreement, as applicable. The FFA is yet to be signed.

Scheme

The scheme consists of construction of two large reefs offshore in 6-m deep water and four near-shore berms (raised barriers), providing beach nourishment of 3,50,000 cubic m along the Ullal sand spit, and shortening of the southern breakwater and extension of the northern breakwater.

Report

The report, a copy of which is available with The Hindu, has proposed that the State-level working group shall include representatives from the State executing agencies, Planning and Finance, State Coastal Zone Management Authority, Environment and Forests, Fisheries, Ports and Harbours, State Pollution Control Board, Tourism, Urban Development, Panchayat and/or Rural Development, NGO, and private sector.

The group will meet not less than twice a year. The strengthening of the Ullal coast is part of the larger India-specific sustainable coastal protection and management scheme being implemented in Karnataka, Maharashtra and Goa. The report said a national steering committee will be established at the Central level comprising representatives from Ministries of Finance, Water Resources, Environment and Forests, Agriculture (Fisheries), Science and Technology, Earth Sciences, Defence (hydrography office) and Home Affairs.

Stakeholders

Another condition is that each sub-project should ensure adequate participation of local community and stakeholders in the planning and must be endorsed by stakeholders.

Each State should ensure that the sub-projects are properly planned and designed including, if necessary, numerical modelling. Sub-projects should be supported by environmental, social and economic analyses to ADB and Government of India requirements, the report said.

It also seeks an assurance that the protection works fully meet the needs of structures in the marine environment with a design life of 25 years and meet the specifications of the design consultants.

The Government may have to assure that the staff will not be transferred out of the project for five years after the training programme is completed.

A number of people will be trained, as part of the ADB project, in effective implementation of the scheme.

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