Due to pollution, climate change, and development and associated activities, India's coastal and marine ecosystems are facing destruction, said the International Union For Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
In a note prepared on the eve of World Ocean's Day, the leading global conservation organisation said that for survival and livelihood, a large number of people in India are dependent on the coastal and marine ecosystems and their resources.
"In spite of their ecological and economic importance and the existence of the policy and regulatory frameworks, India's coastal and marine ecosystems are under increasing threat. The major drivers of change and degradation are mainly anthropogenic," the note said, according to PTI.
"Major anthropogenic direct drivers of ecosystem degradation and destruction include habitat conversion to other forms of land use, overexploitation of resources and associated destructive harvesting practices, the spread of invasive alien species, pollution from domestic, agricultural and industrial effluents and climate change," it added.
It further said that direct and indirect pressures arising from different types of economic development and associated activities have adverse impacts on coastal and marine biodiversity across the country.
IUCN said that sustainable development goals create a framework to sustainably manage and protect marine and coastal ecosystems from land-based pollution, and also help to address the impacts of ocean acidification. It added that enhancing conservation and the sustainable use of ocean-based resources through international law, will help decrease some of the challenges our oceans are facing.
India's coastal ecosystems extend to 42,808 km and consist of mudflats, sandy beaches, estuaries, creeks, mangroves, coral reefs, marshes, lagoons, seagrass beds, and sandy and rocky beaches. Known for their high biological productivity, they provide a wide range of habitat for a multitude of aquatic flora and fauna. Over 13,000 species are estimated to be in the coastal and marine ecosystems.Also Read: While India Focused On COVID-19, Here's What Govt Did To The Environment