Airports Authority of India (AAI) plans to develop three first-of-its-kind water aerodromes in Andaman & Nicobar Islands. Currently, AAI is in the process of obtaining environmental clearance from the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change.
These water aerodromes are planned in Long Island, Swaraj Island and Shaheed Island with a total investment of Rs 50 crore (US$ 7.15 million) and clearance for preparing the Terms of References (ToR) is required separately for three airports.
These airports are part of the ten water aerodromes that the Centre plans to develop.
“It was recommended that ‘ToR’ along with Public Hearing prescribed by the Expert Appraisal Committee (Infrastructure-2) should be considered for preparation of EIA/EMP report for the above mentioned project in addition to all the relevant information as per the ‘Generic Structure of EIA’ given in Appendix III and IIIA in the EIA Notification, 2006,” said an Expert Appraisal Committee under the ministry.
“The draft EIA/EMP report shall be submitted to the State Pollution Control Board for public hearing. The issues emerged and response to the issues shall be incorporated in the EIA report,” it added.
It is estimated that the incoming of tourists at proposed project locations will lead to increase in tourism and hotel business at local level. This will also create job opportunity for local people there.
These water aerodromes will provide in increase in level of current social infrastructural facilities of the islands, the EAC said.
The invitation of bids for three unserved airports/airstrips in Andaman & Nicobar Islands, and one underserved airport in Lakshadweep Island under the fourth round of the regional air connectivity scheme has been sent out, according to the civil aviation ministry.
Last year, licensing norms for water aerodromes, where amphibian planes can land and takeoff were issued by Director General of Civil Aviation.