HomePOPULARPanaji's Smart City Mission Leads the Charge Against Rising Seas

Panaji’s Smart City Mission Leads the Charge Against Rising Seas

Panaji, the capital of flood-prone Goa, is gearing up for a transformative battle against the threat of rising sea levels. Through its smart city mission, Panaji is implementing a series of measures aimed at bolstering its resilience for generations to come.

Identified as one of India’s 15 cities most vulnerable to climate change, Panaji is undergoing significant infrastructure upgrades to mitigate environmental risks. The smart city mission is spearheading two crucial projects to fortify the city’s infrastructure and environmental defenses.

The first project, the ‘Mandovi River Promenade,’ involves constructing a robust rip-rap protection seawall stretching 2.5 kilometers along the coastline from the city’s waterfront to Miramar Beach. This seawall aims to safeguard the coastline from erosion and other environmental impacts. Additionally, a 3.8-kilometer-long composite retaining wall is being built to restore, protect, and stabilize the creek that meanders through much of the city’s downtown area.

Officials overseeing these projects are optimistic about their potential impact. The composite retaining wall, crafted from laterite and reinforced concrete, is expected to improve the flow of the Santa Ines creek, thereby reducing the risk of flooding in low-lying areas.

Panaji’s vulnerability to sea level rise and tidal effects is exacerbated by its coastal location and low elevation. With significant portions of the city situated below sea level, the threat of inundation during periods of heavy rainfall and high tides looms large.

Sanjit Rodrigues, CEO of the Smart City mission, underscores the focus on addressing flooding and discharge into the Mandovi River, particularly exacerbated by tidal influences. However, the effectiveness of these measures will be truly tested during the upcoming monsoon season, as noted by former mayor Surendra Furtado.

Floods have been a recurring challenge for Panaji, with parts of the city submerged during prolonged showers and tidal surges. Previous attempts to tackle the problem have met with limited success, primarily through drain cleaning and reconstruction efforts.

As Panaji prepares for the impending monsoons, the success of the smart city mission’s initiatives will be closely monitored. With the city’s future hanging in the balance, the urgency to fortify Panaji against nature’s relentless forces has never been more pressing.

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