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NGO criticises government reclamation project

Ecocare Maldives says the environmental impact assessment was done in 2011 and is outdated.



An environment NGO has cried foul over a government land reclamation project in Komandoo island, Shaviyani atoll.

The Maldives Transport and Contracting Company’s project, which began last Thursday, is expected to take week.

Ecocare Maldives said that “MTCC is violating environmental regulations” by using the Mahaa Jarraafu dredger for the reclamation.

They called on the public firm to comply with the rules, urging a review of the “outdated” environmental impact assessment that was done in 2011.

“The reclamation is being carried out using a different methodology from what has been proposed,” Ecocare Maldives alleged.

Nobody from the MTCC or environment ministry was available for comment at the time of going to press.

Komandoo island council’s vice president Mohamed Arif told Mihaaru that seven to 10 hectares of land would be reclaimed from the south to the north of the island.

The reclamation of about 70 percent of the area around the island will increase the island’s total land area to over 14 hectares.

The government wants to build 50 flats in the reclaimed area and move the powerhouse and waste management centre to that area. There are also plans to build a children’s park.

MVR 11 million (US$701,798) from the 2018 state budget is allocated for the reclamation and shore protection of Komandoo island.

Some 21 hectares of land was recently reclaimed from nearby Funadhoo island for the development of a domestic airport.