Environment & Biodiversity

Brahmani Natural Arch

  • The Geological Survey of India (GSI) intends to designate the’Brahmani Natural Arch’ in the Kanika range of Odisha’s Sundargarh forest division as a Geo Heritage Site.
  • This natural arch is thought to date back to the Jurassic period and would be India’s largest natural arch with the Geo Heritage designation.

Natural Arch of Brahmani

  • The oval-shaped arch has a 30 metre base length and a 12 metre height.
  • The arch’s alcove can reach a maximum height of 7 metres and a width of 15 metres.
  • There are two additional natural arches in India, located in Tirumala hills in Tirupati and Andaman & Nicobar, however they are both smaller than the one in Sundargarh.

Its emergence

  • The natural arch is made of Upper Kamthi formation ferruginous sandstone.
  • It dates from the lower to middle Jurassic period, from 184 to 160 million years ago.
  • The geological significance of the location was discovered during coal research in the district in 2017.

Efforts to Raise Awareness and Preserve the Environment

  • The GSI state unit and the Sundargarh forest division organised a district-wide awareness campaign to encourage the preservation of the natural arch.
  • The planned geo-heritage monument is being promoted as a source of cultural pride, with the possibility of naming it the ‘Brahmani natural arch.’
  • As an eco-tourism attraction, the property might be promoted and conserved.
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