On World Nature Conservation Day, celebrated on July 28, Cairn Oil & Gas is strengthening its environmental initiatives and spreading awareness on the need to balance economic activity with ecological conservation. With a strong adherence to Environment, Social, and Governance (ESG) guidelines, the company has pursued sustainability as its top priority. Moreover, the intervention of superior technology and industry leading efforts has enabled Cairn to demonstrate its commitment to ecological balance and environmental nourishment.
Reaffirming their commitment to best conservation practices, Prachur Sah, Deputy CEO, Cairn Oil & Gas, said, “Our business operations are conducted in some of the most complex ecosystems of the country. As a company, our top-most priority has been to maintain and nourish our surrounding environment with extensive investments in technology,processes, and traditional & indigenous knowledge. With a holistic Biodiversity Management Plan that combines preservation and innovation, we are providing some ground-breaking solutions to age-old problems, while building robust community and local partnerships.”
The areas of Cairn’s operations are marked by rich floral and faunal diversity. The Rajasthan block is home to more than 120 species of birds along with a dozen species of mammals, reptiles, and butterflies. Similarly, S’Yanam Beach near the Ravva offshore facility in Andhra Pradesh also witnesses the annual mass nesting or ‘arribada’ of Olive Ridley turtles, declared vulnerable by the IUCN Red List. Catering to indigeneity in surroundings, a key area of intervention has been the protection of local ecological diversity.
Cairn Rajasthan block (RJON block) is situated in one of India’s most unique eco-system — the Thar Desert. The block is dominated by scrubl and and sparse high-storied vegetation comprising of both native and exotic plant species. Economically and religiously important tree species such as Khejri (Prosopis cineraria), Ker (Capparis decidua) and Rohida (Tecomella undulata) are common in the block area. The company has taken source receptor approach to develop its greenbelt in and around its facilities in discussion and consultation with local forest department and has developed ~121ha of greenbelt cover on community land and ~105 ha within and in surroundings of facilities (terminals and well pads) in Barmer and Jalore districts. These greenbelts provide shelter for wild animals and help to balance the local ecology.
A floral biodiversity park named MPT Desert Park hosting over 50 species now dots the landscape of Barmer, Mangala Processing Terminal. Desert park make a unique self-sustained ecosystem with diverse types of fruit (pomegranates, chickoo, dates, jungle jalebi, mulberry etc.) and shelter plant species, which support good bird and butterfly diversity. STP treated water is being used through drip network in desert park for irrigation. Cairn has also taken initiative for sand dune stabilization in and around its facility with the help of planting native plant species. Company has developed a nursery at MPT & RGT to prepare sapling of native species for acclimatization with local weather condition before putting them in ground for better survival rate & growth.
Earthen pots, bird huts and bird feeders have been installed to provide water, food and shelter to the avifauna present in the region. Further, the company has planted 279 acres of mangroves along the coasts of Bay of Bengal and Arabian Sea – mindful that India is already suspected to have lost 40% of its mangrove cover over the last century. This is an excellent roosting site for native bird species and facilitates conservation of the Fishing Cat, listed as endangered by IUCN. The company also works closely with local communities like the Bishnois in western Rajasthan to enhance local participation and embrace traditional conservation practices. This association has not only augmented vigil over the poaching of wild animals but also assisted with rescue efforts for injured animals. Cairn has also handed over a dedicated vehicle with necessary tools and tackles to transport injured and dead wild animals to the forest department.
As a leading corporate player operating in some of India’s most complex ecosystems, Cairn Oil & Gas has been keen to in corporates stain ability in its practices. The company’s vision encourages contributing positively to minimize any adverse impact and achieve Net Positive Gain (NPG) of biodiversity. Realizing the significance of preservation and conservation, Cairn is pioneering the practices of green business that are beneficial for the environment, its local diversity and the people who make their living here.