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Andhra Pradesh: Sriharikota island eroding, and Chennai’s multiple ports are at fault by SV Krishna Chaitanya April 08,2021   |  Source: The New Indian Express

Sriharikota island, India’s spaceport and a critical facility, is eroding. This is partly because of the growing port infrastructure in Chennai, say coastal scientists conducting shoreline studies to understand the problem. When contacted by Express, M Srinivasulu Reddy, controller at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC-Shar), said, “Yes, we are experiencing a little erosion, especially on the northern strip of the island. We requested scientists from the Chennai-based National Centre for Coastal Research (NCCR) to undertake studies and recommend solutions. We are yet to receive a report from them.” As for how much area of the island, which is home to ISRO’s rocket launch station, has been lost, Reddy said, “We don’t know. NCCR scientists are studying it.” But as per rough estimates, based on Google Earth images and visual evidence from the ground, at least 200-300 m of the beach has been eroded in the past decade. Express has visited at least half a dozen villages abutting Sriharikota island on the north. Only the Pulicat Lake bar mouth separates these traditional fishing villages from the highly-guarded Sriharikota island. Fishermen in Navapetta, Monapalem, Kondurpalem, Srinivasapuram, Vadapalem, Manjakuppam and Govindapalipalem villages say that though there


© newindianexpress.com 2021

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