The Western Ghats also known as Sahyadri Hills is a 1600 km long mountain range running all along the west coast of India. Covering approximately 1,40,000 sq km, these mountains are home to number of endemic plants and animal species. It is one of the hotspots of the world from biodiversity point of view. Western Ghats start from the river Tapi in North, traverse Gujarat, Maharashtra, Goa, Karnataka, Tamil-Nadu and ends at Kanyakumari of Kerala in South. About 60% of the Western Ghats is in the state of Karnataka. Western Ghats harbors more than 4000 species of flowering plants of which about 1700 species are endemic to the region. This section gives you overall idea about Western Ghats.
Western Ghats / Mountain range
The Western Ghats refer to the 1,600-km mountain range running from Tapti river on the Gujarat-Maharashtra border to Kanyakumari. Around 30% of the range is under forest cover and the area is recognized as one of the world's 10 top biodiversity hotspots. This area has one of the world's highest concentrations of wild relatives of cultivated plants.
Source: ‘Green reports are faulty, says expert’, 13 October 2010, Times of India
First eco-tourism District
Sindhudurg, incidentally, has the highest green cover in Maharashtra (49%) and was declared the first eco-tourism district in the country in 1997.
Source: ‘49 mining leases will soon strip bare Sindhudurg, state’s greenest district’, 15 October 2010, Times of India
Source: ‘After Goa, miners turn their attention to state’, 15 October 2010, Times of India
The Amphibians of India
In a first-of-its-kind initiative, the University of Delhi, in association with national and international agencies, is launching an initiative for conservation of Indian amphibians one of the most threatened groups of animals in the world. Around 47 of the 320 species of amphibians (frogs, caecilians and salamanders) found in India have been lost permanently. They include different species of frogs and nine species of caecilians (legless amphibians). The amphibians of India currently face a high risk of rapid extinction due to habitat destruction and over 50 species are considered ‘threatened’.
Name of Lost Species
Last found in
Last found in 1920 in Kodagu region in Karnataka
Ghats Wart Frog
Found in Gudalur, Nilgiris missing since 1979
Last seen in Kerala forests in 1937
Missing from Silent Valley, Kerala since 1979
Last seen in 1930 in Malabar and Thrissur
New Species Found
A new frog found in Nagaland in 2009
A new frog species found in Anaimudi hills in Coimbatore district in 2001
Source: ‘Hunt on for ‘lost amphibians’ of W Ghats’,06 November 2010, Times of India
Power plants in Konkan:
There are two operational power plants in the 150-km stretch between Dapoli and Jaitapur along the Konkan coast in Ratnagiri district. The government has also given clearance to a coalbased plant at Rampur in Ratangiri and a 9,900 MW nuclear power plant at Madban Jaitapur.
The eight plants are spread over an area of 150 km along the Konkan Coast. The total capacity of power generation is 20,943 mw.
A mangroves land under the plants is around 5,000 hectares.
There are 400 species of fish and 500 species of crustaceans. The coast is also known for its corral reefs and mudflats. It is a nesting ground for birds.
The one year study has documented 11 new marine species & rediscovered 7 other species after a gap of 7 years.
RG & PI
Source: ‘Power plants threaten 150-km stretch of Ratnagiri coastline’, 30 November 2010, Times of India.
Jaitapur Power Plant
6 plants, each of which can generate 1,650 mw
of power 938 hectares
Uranium (692 for plant site and 246 for, residential use)
Source : Jaitapur N-unit gets green nod, 30 November 2010, Times of India
Sindhudurg District Area
Private Forest land
Kinds of Birds
Source: ‘Jairam asks new CM to review mine leases’, 13 December 2010, Times of India.