Environmental friendly solutions that are compatible with ever-changing needs of the society are major challenges in coastal zone management today. For centuries, the coastal zone has been a focus for a variety of activities including industry, agriculture, recreation and fisheries. The coastline is a national heritage and in order to sustain it for future generations, sustainable management of coastal resources and defence is essential. Natural and anthropogenic changes in coastal regions significantly affect both property and life. Scientific understanding of the mechanisms causing coastal change provides guidance for an appropriate societal response. Important goals of the coastal zone management program are to assess coastal change vulnerability and conduct research to identify and quantify the processes and mechanisms that contribute to coastal change. The coastal intersection of land, sea, and air is a highly dynamic region that evolves in time and in space over a wide range of scales due to a variety of physical processes that operate over the various scales.
For preparation of the coastal protection strategy, the management boundaries needs to be delineated based on the sediment cell. Therefore, an analysis of the available data on the issues in coastal stretches from Gopalpur to Chilika and Paradip to Dhamara were identified and the result indicated that the major issues are, erosion of beaches at Gopalpur, Paradip and Pentha, shifting and sustenance of mouth at Chilka, shoreline changes along the Gahirmatha coast and similar anticipated changes around Dhamra and Wheeler islands. So, the ICZM Project planned to take up a study on Regional Coastal Processes to provide inputs on factors responsible for shoreline changes.
The sediment cell and sediment budget are essential planning tools for regional and coastal management. A critical scientific challenge of direct practical importance is to describe the physical mechanisms that operate at these various scales, and establish the interactions between the different scale processes. To learn more about the Coastal Process study and its aspects ICZMP, Odisha has also organized a 3 days’ workshop on Coastal Sediment Cell and Odisha Regional Coastal Process Study where Prof. John Pethic, International Expert on Coastal Geomorphology participated. According to the advice of Dr Pethic, the Regional approach in developing Coastal Protection strategy for Odisha coast can be divided into following:
The study consists of collection of data on Energy such as tides, currents & waves, Bathymetry, Coastal Sediments and Ecology in the project domain for development of impact models. The planned activities are in agreement with standard procedures and techniques adopted in the coastal processes studies carried out worldwide.
Based on the output of the study, the shoreline management plan and ICZM plan for Odisha will be prepared in a strategic management approach for economic development, protection against coastal erosion, promote sustainable use and conservation of the coastal zone’s natural resources.