The Chilika Development Authority (CDA) has drafted a report recommending the state government that the proposed water aerodrome over the lake will negatively impact the ecosystem and the surrounding human population, a report accessed by The Indian Express revealed.
In June, the Airports Authority of India announced plans of starting water aerodromes and amphibious aircraft operation in Chilika lake and Sabarmati river of Gujarat.
Officials in charge of conservation of Odisha’s Chilika, Asia’s largest brackishwater lake, have advised against starting the proposed sea plane facility there, citing the legal restrictions and the economic and ecological problems it would cause.
Chilika, the second largest brackish water lake in the world, covers Khurda, Puri and Ganjam districts. Situated at the mouth of the Daya River, Chilika is rich in biodiversity and a major tourist attraction in the state.
The lake yields around 14000 tonnes of fish every year providing livelihood to 2 lakh fishermen from 158 primary fishing cooperative societies. The sound and vibration during take-off and landing is likely to adversely affect the breeding of the prized M Cephalus prawn.
The movement and sound of seaplanes will “seriously jeopardize” the habitat of Chilika’s nearly one million avian visitors, which include 230 bird species and 97 migrants from the Arctic and Eurasian regions, the report states.