Island Protection Zone (IPZ) 2019 Notification
The Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change recently notified Island Protection Zone (IPZ) 2019 for Andaman and Nicobar. Changes in Island Protection Zone rules are aligned with the NITI Aayog’s proposal for holistic development in the Islands.
It brings the norms for Andaman and Nicobar at par with Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) 2018 norms for other islands close to the mainland and backwater islands where a No Development Zone (NDZ) is only 20 meters from high tide line.
- Eco-tourism projects about 20 meters away from the high tide line (HTL) in small sized islands like Baratang, Havelock, and Car Nicobar are allowed.
- If islands are large in size, eco-tourism 50 meters from the HTL is permitted.
- It allows for eco-tourism activities like mangrove walks, tree huts and nature trails in island coastal regulation zone (ICRZ).
- The notification also allows for construction of roads, roads on stilts by reclaiming land in exceptional cases for defence installations, public utilities or strategic purposes in eco-sensitive zones.
- In case construction of such roads pass through mangroves, a minimum three times the mangrove area destroyed during the construction process shall be taken up for compensatory plantation of mangroves elsewhere.
Previously, IPZ 2011 stipulated an NDZ of 200 meters from the HTL for all islands. Only pipelines, transmission lines, trans-harbor links to be laid in the eco-sensitive zone were permitted. Now road construction is allowed.
Salient Features of CRZ Regulations 2019
Two separate categories for CRZ-III (Rural) areas
CRZ-III A: The A category of CRZ-III areas are densely populated rural areas with a population density of 2161 per square kilometre as per 2011 Census. Such areas have a No Development Zone (NDZ) of 50 meters from the High Tide Line (HTL) as against 200 meters from the High Tide Line stipulated in the CRZ Notification, 2011.
CRZ-III B – The B category of CRZ-III rural areas have population density of below 2161 per square kilometre as per 2011 Census. Such areas have a No Development Zone of 200 meters from the HTL.
Floor Space Index Norms eased
As per CRZ, 2011 Notification, the Floor Space Index (FSI) or the Floor Area Ratio (FAR) had been frozen. In the CRZ 2019 Notification, the government decided to de-freeze the Floor Space Index and permit FSI for construction projects.
Tourism infrastructure permitted in coastal areas
The new norms permit temporary tourism facilities such as shacks, toilet blocks, change rooms, drinking water facilities, etc. in Beaches. Such temporary tourism facilities are a
Streamlining of CRZ Clearances
The procedure for CRZ clearances has been streamlined. Now, the only such projects which are located in the CRZ-I (Ecologically Sensitive Areas) and CRZ IV (area covered between Low Tide Line and 12 Nautical Miles seaward) will be dealt with for CRZ clearance by the Ministry. The powers for clearances with respect to CRZ-II and III have been delegated at the State level.
No Development Zone of 20 meters for all Islands
For islands close to the main land coast and for all Backwater Islands in the main land, No Development Zone of 20 meters has been stipulated in wake of space limitations and unique geography of such regions.
To address pollution in Coastal areas, the treatment facilities have been made permissible in CRZ-I B area subject to necessary safeguards.