Red Sand Hills
- Recently, scientists have urged the Andhra Pradesh government to conserve the coastal red sand dunes.
- These coastal red sand dunes are called ‘Erra Matti Dibbalu’ in the local language. These are also called ‘Red Sand Hills’. These are located in the fringe areas of Visakhapatnam city.
- On top of these there are sand dunes of light yellow colour. Beneath them is a layer of brick-coloured red sand. Beneath this layer is a reddish-brown concrete-like solid sand layer and at the bottom is a yellow sand structure.
- These dunes are of fragile nature and are prone to natural erosion.
- In the year 2014, the Geological Survey of India (GSI) gave it the status of a Geo-Heritage site.
- Geological heritage sites are also called national geological monuments. These are geological areas of scientific, cultural and educational importance.
Importance of Erra Mitti Dibba
- It is helpful to study the effect of climate change, as these dunes have existed in both warm and ice ages.
- This heritage site is approximately 18,500 to 20,000 years old and may belong to the last Ice Age.
- This is a rare phenomenon, as such deposits of sand do not form in equatorial regions or temperate regions.
- Such deposits are found only at three sites in the tropical regions of South Asia. Besides Erra Matti, terry sands in Tamil Nadu and a sand deposit in Sri Lanka are examples.
- This site has also been the shelter of prehistoric man. Stone Age tools and Neolithic pottery of three different eras have been obtained from here.
Source – The Hindu