91 Odisha Villages Most Prone To Sea Erosion: Report

Bhubaneswar: At least 91 villages have become highly vulnerable to sea erosion threat in the coastal belt of Odisha.

Of the 91 most sea erosion-prone villages, Kendrapada has 49 villages, Balasore and Bhadrak districts have eight villages each, while four are villages in Ganjam. Puri and Jagatsinghpur districts have one village each which are vulnerable to sea erosion, reports said.

Odisha’s Forest, Environment, and Climate Change department has submitted an action plan before the Centre for 2021-30. A number of initiatives are being taken under this plan to prevent sea erosion, sources said.

As many as 318 villages of six districts along the sea coast in Odisha were included in the report to assess sea erosion threats. According to the report, 91 villages are most prone to sea erosion and 85 villages are prone to sea erosion. Of these 85 sea erosion-prone villages, 33 are in Balasore, 22 each in Bhadrak and Kendrapada, five in Jagatsighpur and one village in Puri. Rest 142 coastal villages are not so prone to sea threats.

At least 36.9 percent area of the coastline along Odisha coast is facing sea erosion, the report said.

One of the worst hit due to sea erosion is Satabhaya panchayat under Rajnagar block of Kendrapara district. Once a cluster of seven villages, barely one is left as six villages have been gobbled by sea.

The 17 km stretch of the coast near Satabhaya is described as the fastest-eroding beach in Odisha and only a small portion of the cluster remains. Around 600 families of Satabhaya were shifted to the rehabilitation colony at Bagapatia four years ago facing the fury of the sea.

Similarly, Chikiti and Ganjam blocks are the worst affected by sea erosion in Ganjam district. Ramayapatana, Chandanbada, and Alatpur in Chikiti and Podempeta in Ganjam are most prone to sea erosion and over 100 houses including pucca ones were washed away in the areas during monsoons.

The report further said that 52.7 per cent coastline in Odisha is facing siltation. While Kendrapada is most prone to coastal erosion, Bhadrak is facing siltation.

The stretch between Gopalpur and Chilika is in a stable condition while the stretch between Paradip and Dhamara is most vulnerable. The Rushikulya river mouth is also in a vulnerable situation.

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