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Coastal Odisha - Hopeless environment, helpless sky and hapless denizens
Odisha's cost of political industrialization- Anugul and Talcher are the hottest places of India in this summer. People have to wait and wait. How we wish people knew what is in store in the near future! Temperatures are already dwindling close to 50 degree celcius in Angul-Talcher and Jharsuguda belts.

The present concerns of Climate Change arise from the dangers of a range of impacts on the Global Environmental Health, which have far reaching effects including the bizarre catastrophic projections on the very equilibrium of the planet. Even the 'Environment Giants' of the world community would have to admit that Odisha stands poised to be the 'typical case study' for both the aspects of causality i.e. Cause and Effect seem to be much local to our Largely Coastal State. It's the right time to think for the hopeless environment, helpless sky and hapless denizens.

Policy Making is only a nightmarish experience.The levels of policy making need to be competitive to the types of those necessary to handle resettlement of war-ravished zones or those of huge natural calamities. The democratic pressure systems need to interplay in a manner exemplary to the human cognition in recent times.

The fossil fuel 'gormandizing' by 'glutton' energy producers is the cause of the epicenter of Global Warming in the Angul-Talcher Belt (A.T. Belt). The Satbhaya-Pentha Area in Rajnagar Block of the 480km long coastline is a nightmare Effect of Global Warming. While Coal-Mining and Power-Plants are the major concerns in the Cause-Belt, the Sea-Ports are the concerns in the fragile ecosystem preserved over centuries.

With a plethora of the 'policy-makers' at our national capital New Delhi with realizations much to dissatisfaction of even the common mind. The intelligentsia is yet to envisage the hugeness of the happenings. The same trend gets worsened as and how we go away from the National Capital closer to the actual epicenter of Environmental Concern e.g. A-T belt. Such conclusions are drawn from the experience that the intellectuals at New Delhi and Bhubaneswar are yet to place this emerging topic. E.g. the concern of Coastal-Erosion aggravating due to Global Warming finds itself in Five Departments! No department is able to place itself.

The State Government on the other hand was caught unaware on 16.06.09 stating on national TV to be having no policy whatsoever to counter this menace. An eye-wash of the form of OCCAP-2010 has come on 04.06.10 to the respite of the fuming public gasping for breath! For example, there is at all no provision for research on studies on Protection from Coastal Erosion arising due to Global Warming. The sea wall project has been dropped! The plantation in coastal belts is envisaged without proper Research / Studies.

The gaping erosions at the coast of Puri, the abandoned hamlets of Rajanagar, the overturned ecology of Wheelers island, the changes in courses of the mouth of the Chilka, the sinking of ITR Chandipur, the obstruction of the littoral drift downstream of the commissioned small ports, the unpreparedness of the waste management of the sea traffic in the new ports will take months of policy-making rather than quell the severity in any way. It is also without mention in the OCCAP-2010 booklet, sleepless nights for the comfort seeking managers of poor Orrissa.

The Angul-Talcher Thermodynamics is much like the Tandoor that we use for the baking of Tandoori-Nan. The movement in the air above is insufficient to connect the sky-line of the Angul-Talcher Belt with the rest of the world. This happens to a large extent due to the geographic location of the area. The place is devoid of the mass daily movement of the Sea-Land Breeze as experiences in coastal areas. The only respite being from the occasional Low-Pressure movements which are a delight for the area. The sky would be clean and the tandoor empty of its heat. The rest of the time the thermodynamics of the area is a building up of the entropy of the area.

Furthermore the gas-emissions in the area particularly carbon-dioxide send the Carbon Credits to go tumbling down with equally large dosage of particulate pollutants all sending a alarm bell to the health of the local people.

Manas Ranjan Mishra Physicist – cum- Industrial Mathematician says, "It is thus the most critical of spots of a sinking ecosystem to be taken care of in the country! The problem of setting up an action plan for the alleviation of the agony of the area needs to be addressed more intensively with the participation of the local people. A pragmatic approach be undertaken to secure intellect on the issue and prevent red-tapism on the creative minds."

Mishar says, "Although figures stand against Industrial Houses but the concerned department’s officers and government are sitting silently. Innocent population of the A-T Belt stand armed with the statistics of nuisance caused to their life and future. The whole place has been rendered poisoned and devoid of the essence of life. The corpse needs to be livened. The salted-dried fish will swim! For exapmle in Odisha, thick forest cover of 46,000 has been reduced to open forest in the last ten years. Who owns the responsibility?"

So sad to say for the life of the area we have ourselves turned into a living-hell. When the catastrophe is imminent we scramble for ways unknown for whom? Bureaucratic hurdles to local creativity will cost a big prize. Still it is not late for a good beginning. Political will, bureaucratic involvement and public good will may save us. There is no harm trying! We have to steer clear of Political profiteering - Bureaucratic indifference - Public outrage.

The opposition to industries running at cost of people's life. The setting up of industries, mines, power-stations, etc at the cost of human life and that of the biota should be opposed at equally severe force. The area has already exhausted its carrying capacity long back. All the statistics are against the further setting up of the PSUs, the control and co-ordination of the existing ones and then emancipation of the suffering population who have no option but to face the living-hell.

The causes of pollution in Angul-Talcher belt: industrial pollution being responsible for 57% of carbon emissions and that of transport of mining materials leading to a further 27% it is verily pertinent to cause concerns to the life and health of the people reeling under immediate impacts of an area as the source of global warming. A declining forest cover is of catastrophic consequences of the people of the area. Statistics suggests that the thick forest cover has vanished from a figure of 26,000 sq km in 1997 to a mere 7,000 sq km in 2007.

The misery of the people has been caused due to the unsafe and the unplanned industrialization in the A-T belt. The restoration of the environment is overdue and the same has to be undertaken first before any further industrialization has to be undertaken. Clean air, water and temperature conditions being the fundamental rights of the people all the efforts are required to be taken to restore the same in the area to at least what it was before any industrialization.

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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