Kottayam-Kumarakom Ecocity Project
The Kottayam-Kumarakom Ecocity Project (KKEP) was the result of a unique collaboration between the Government of India (Ministry of Environment and Forests – MoEF), Government of Kerala (GoK), Kottayam Municipality (KM) and Ecosmart. This project is a unique example of integrated Regional Planning in Kerala.
The Project addresses the development needs of the Kottayam-Kumarakom Ecocity Region (KKER), comprising Kottayam Municipality, and eight neighbouring panchayats in Kottayam district of Central Kerala. The region lies on the eastern bank of the Vembanad Lake, a unique ecologically diverse backwater stretch and is an environmentally sensitive area, characterized by large tracts of marshy lands, agricultural fields and an extensive network of waterways. The region is trying to cope up with the twin facets of growth and sustenance - Environment and Development, as a result of the increase in tourism activities mainly based on the lake and growing population density. The project attempts to address the issues and dilemmas of development of the region.
Phase I of the Project aimed at preparing a Comprehensive Environmental Management Plan (CEMP) for the region. The Plan identifies interventions necessary to promote sustainable socio-economic development in the region, with particular emphasis on the environmental consequences of such interventions, in view of the unique environmental context of the area. Phase I has been completed and the project has moved to the implementation phase or Phase II which focuses on the implementation of the projects identified in the CEMP. Ecosmart has been awarded the Presidents Innovation Award for this project.
As a part of this project, the first integrated Solid Waste Management Treatment and Disposal system for a Municipal Town in the country has been established under a unique Public – Private Partnership format for Kottayam Town. The Chief Minister of Kerala has formally launched the SWM system. Along with other factors, this unique project was also considered by the Government of Kerala to raise Kottayam to the covetable position of Best Municipality in Kerala.