The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Government of India has approved the Coastal Zone Management Plans (CZMPs) of Karnataka based on the recommendation of the National Coastal Zone Management Authority In its 45th meeting on 01.09.2022. Hence, all proposals received henceforth for CRZ clearance shall be considered as per CRZ Notification, 2019. The CRZ Notification 2019 is available on the website of MoEF&CC (CRZ Notifications). Maps for the Karnataka CZMP may be obtained from the Karnataka State Coastal Zone Management Authority or from the Department of Tourism head office (provide address). The nodal officer of Department of Tourism in this regard is Smt. Anitha Bhaskar, Deputy Director, Department of Tourism.
The Karnataka CZMP includes a Tourism Plan for Coastal Karnataka that spans 92 beaches across the Uttara Kannada, Udupi, and Dakshina Kannada – the 3 coastal districts of Karnataka. By including this tourism plan in the approved Coastal Zone Master Plan for the State, the beaches can be developed as prominent tourist destinations. This fulfils one of the key promises made by the Government of Karnataka during the announcement of the Karnataka State Budget 2022-23.
Consideration of the tourism plan for coastal Karnataka shall enable Karnataka to position itself on the global tourism map with high-quality coastal tourism offerings. This shall also help attract investment opportunities in coastal Karnataka, an opportunity that has not been explored to its fullest potential so far. Such investments will boost the overall development of the areas and create tourism-driven socio-economic growth and prosperity for the local population of coastal Karnataka. The sustainable development of coastal Karnataka is key to achieving the goals of Karnataka Tourism Policy 2020-26 as well as Coastal Regulation Zone Notification 2019.
Under the Tourism Plan, the Government of Karnataka has submitted activities shall be undertaken in accordance with the guidelines given for the respective CRZ Classification viz CRZ-I A, CRZ-I B, CRZ-II, CRZ-III or CRZ-IV. Hotels, resorts, jetties, shacks, water sports, adventure sports and other tourism projects may be taken up by interested parties subject to permissibility under the applicable Coastal Regulation Zone notification.
The Government of Karnataka has identified Coastal Tourism and Maritime Tourism as key tourism themes under the Karnataka Tourism Policy 2020-26 and the entire districts of Dakshina Kannada, Udupi and Uttara Kannada have been identified as Focus Tourism Destinations under the policy. The development of tourism in coastal Karnataka holds immense potential to create direct and indirect employment, diversify revenue streams for the local population and lead to overall socio-economic development. This vision is aligned with the CRZ notification which stresses on the livelihood security to the fishing communities and other local communities in the coastal areas and to promote sustainable development. Responsible tourism in coastal Karnataka shall also provide a more enjoyable experiences for tourists through meaningful connections with local people, provides a greater understanding of local culture and environment, engenders respect between tourists and hosts and builds local pride and confidence.
The Government of Karnataka shall endeavour to ensure that tourism activities in coastal Karnataka shall adopt low-impact tourism that protects the ecological and environmental integrity of the destination and its surrounding areas and provide livelihood opportunities to local communities. Projects shall be encouraged to use indigenously produced local and sustainable materials for tourism activities, highlight the heritage values of the area and build environmental and cultural respect and awareness. By bringing together the concerned stakeholders for coastal Karnataka, the Government of Karnataka shall seek to facilitate the sustainability of tourism enterprises and activities.