Wetland Conservation Act

Change for the worse?

Print edition :

Huge concrete structures are coming up in Kozhikode even as the low-lying area and wetlands are being illegally filled by real estate lobbies despite resistance from environmentalists. Debris of buildings and waste materials are dumped into a section of the wetlands adjacent to the city. Photo: S. RAMESH KURUP

A farm worker transplanting paddy saplings at Venoli in suburban Palakkad on June 27. The State Department of Economics and Statistics has estimated rice production in 2017-18 at 5,15,564 tonnes from a total area of 1,84,157 hectares. Productivity is also expected to rise to 2,800 kilograms a hectare from 2,550 kg in 2016-17. Photo: K.K. Mustafah

Estimated rice output in States and decline in paddy cultivation in Kerala.

A group of Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme workers desilting an abandoned pond near Kanjikode in Palakkad district, which has been experiencing severe water scarcity in recent years. Groundwater depletion in the district has reached unprecedented levels. Photo: K.K. Mustafah

Local fishermen fishing in a former pokkali rice field in the Changaram wetlands near Ezhupunna in Alappuzha district. Pokkali, a traditional coastal variety of rice, is cultivated only a few months every year; the fields, which are left fallow for the rest of year, double as fish or shrimp farms. Photo: Thulasi Kakkat

Different varieties of rice kept for sale at a shop in Kochi, a file picture. Photo: K.K. Mustafah

Environmentalists in Kerala are up in arms against amendments to an Act that envisaged protection of paddy land and wetlands, but the LDF government claims that the changes only provide clarity to the Act and there has been no dilution of it.
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