Introduction

Earth Science & Technology Cell (ESTC) has been set up at the Department of Life Sciences, Maharaja Krishnakumarsinhji Bhavnagar University (MKBU) for multi-institutional network project for focussed research on “Marine coastal ecology of West Coast of India”. A memorandum of understanding between Government of India, Earth System Science Organization (ESSO), Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES) and Maharaja Krishnakumarsinhji Bhavnagar University (MKBU), Bhavnagar, Gujarat was signed for establishment of the ESTC-MKBU on 24th June, 2014.  The ESTC network project comprises of twelve projects on Marine Biodiversity (9) and Marine Pollution (3) from nine Universities/Institutes. The main objectives of establishment of ESTC are to promote capacity building, take up advanced research & development, human resource management and training in marine coastal ecology and related aspects along the west coast of India.

It is a matter of pride that the ESTC has been first established at MKBU. Earlier Bhavnagar University Ocean and Atmospheric Science and Technology Cell (BU OASTC) on Marine Coastal Ecology (West Coast) was established on 23rd December, 1999 at Department of Life Sciences, Bhavnagar University, Bhavnagar. Of the nine OASTCs set up in the country for capacity building, it is a matter of pride that the OASTC on Marine Coastal Ecology at BU was the first to be established.