Discuss the severity of water crisis in India. Suggest measures to conserve water.
- India accounts for 18% of global population with only 4% of world’s water resources. This inherent water shortage is amplified by inefficient management, in effective usage, climate change and reckless wastage.
Present conditions of water crisis in India –
- In terms of Quantity of water available –
- Water shortage – Indian cities is are facing extreme water scarcity. According to Composite Water Management Index of NitiAyog, nearly 21 cities by 2021 will face zero ground water condition.
- Excessive groundwater exploitation – India alone accounts for 25% of global ground-water withdrawal, triggering zero water day scenario for around 12% of its population.
- Net water exporter – Indian agriculture is disproportionately skewed in favour of water guzzling crops, making India a virtual water exporter in face of severity.
- Water crisis in terms of Quality of water available –
- Decreasing oxygen levels in water – According to IUCN, 2% of oxygen in water has been lost due to climate change.
- Sewage and water waste disposal – Quality of river water like Ganga has been severely have harmed by waste disposal.
- Increasing uranium contamination and heavy metal pollution in ground water, making it unsafe for human consumption.
Efficient water conservation can only resolve the present crisis following steps can be taken in this regard:
- Community water management – Theni district model of water conservation which won Skoch gold ward a gold award can be replicated it involves building common structures for water conservation.
- Desiltation of existin0067 water bodies.
- Curbing of sand mining on river beds.
- Water harvesting structures on line of Kakatiya water Management structures.
- . Changes in agriculture, which consumes 90% of groundwater.
- Development of micro irrigation capacity like drip irrigation.
- Checking the skewed cropping pattern in India according to its local geography.
- Holistic policy interventions like a forestation, curbing climate change, community awareness, waste treatment will go a long way in dealing with the water crisis in India.