Union Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change,  Prakash Javadekar yesterday interacted with Chief Ministers, Cabinet Ministers and  State Government Officers of six States through video conferencing  to discuss issues relating to notification of Ecologically Sensitive Area, ESA pertaining to Western Ghats. These States are  Kerala, Karnataka, Goa, Maharashtra, Gujarat and Tamil Nadu.

The Ministry of Environment in a statement said, to conserve and protect the bio diversity of Western Ghats while allowing for sustainable and inclusive development of the region, the Central Government  constituted a High Level Working Group under the Chairmanship of Dr. Kasturirangan. The Committee recommended that identified geographical areas falling in these  States may be declared as Ecologically Sensitive Areas. 

A draft notification was issued in October 2018 mentioning the areas to be notified in the ESA. It said, states were of unanimous view that looking into the importance of Western Ghats, there is need to ensure protection of the western Ghats. However, the states expressed their views as regards activities and extent of area mentioned in the notification. During the meeting, it was decided that state specific issues shall be further deliberated so as to arrive at a consensus on the issue. The states expressed their desire to expedite early notification while protecting interest of ecology and environment.

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