Can we look forward to the fruits of the revival of a unique backwater system that fringes Pattinapakkam?
Yes, if plans remain on track. The results of the restoration of nature here are showing and all this to the due to the sustained state-funded effort.
If you care to slow down now, on the road leading to the Pattinapakkam seashore from the Dr. DGS Dhinakaran Salai and take a close look at the sprawling estuarine space, you will be glad to see vast volumes of clean water here, with healthy trees hugging the fringe.
This area which is the Adyar River Creek is also part of the massive natural regeneration project called Adyar Poonga, now named Tholkappaiya Poonga managed by the Chennai Rivers Restoration Trust (CRRT).
The CRRT has completed restoring the west side of the Creek which is called the Poonga and is out of bounds to the public save for registered guests. The Trust then began work on dredging the Pattinapakkam Creek section and planting mangroves and local saplings. It managed to secure much of this Creek.
But two big hurdles remain – the massive accumulation of garbage dumped at the east end of the Creek by residents of Srinivasapuram and to put in place a mechanism to clear the Creek’s mouth near the sea where the sand bar blocks free flow of water inwards.
Scientists at CIBA ( Central Institute for Brackishwater Aquaculture) with its headquarters located on the edge of the Adyar Creek here say that their experimental projects in the Creek, of nurturing crabs and fish that grow well in brackishwater ran well but died when the flow of water inwards from the sea was often disrupted because the sand bar was not periodically cleared by the PWD contractors.
If the backwaters are kept alive and clean, fish and crabs and other creatures will thrive in this Creek, says one scientist at CIBA.