Water is one of the most important natural resource, it is the most basic need for all living beings as well as a very valuable national asset.Ever increasing demands of water for domestic, irrigation as well as industrial sectors have created water crisis worldwide.
In India, Water availability per capita is on decline with most obvious reasons as increasing demand for water with increasing rate of population. The rivers are getting dried up, groundwater is depleting and canals are polluted,massive urbanization/ industrialization throughout the country,increasing construction/ infrastructure development activities,depleting of natural resources due to changing climate conditions,lack of implementation of effective water management systems etc. are the main ground water related areas of concern which needs appropriate attention of management for Rain Water Harvesting & Artificial Recharging.
The application of an appropriate rainwater harvesting technology can make possible the utilization of rainwater as a valuable and, in many cases, necessary water resource.
WATER AVAILABILITY IN INDIA
India is blessed with sufficient rainfall as a whole,yet there are large swathes of dry, drought prone area. In many other places the quality of groundwater is not good.Ground water plays a critical role in the urban environment. It has a significant contribution in municipal, industrial and domestic water supply.In major part of our country, most of the rainfall water goes as runoff and meets sea. Only 10 to 20% of total rainfall water is added to groundwater. Therefore, it is very much essential that rainwater is utilized to maximum extent and waste water is recharged.
Presently India’s population is 16% of the world population, whereas, water resources are only 4% that of the world.Present water demand is 1122 billion m3 (Surfce water690 billion m3 and groundwater 432 billion m3).By 2010, groundwater demand would increase to 710 billion m3.By 2050, it would be 1180 billion m3 i.e. less than availability.In Rajasthan, total water availability is 10382 million m3 at present, whereas the requirement is 12999 m3.Out of 236 blocks, 204 blocks are over-exploited due to above situation. The demand in 2025 would be doubled, we can imagine scenario of 2050.
GROUND WATER CRISES IN CITIES
The cities have become concrete jungles and land prices are going sky-high.The catchments of the cities are being destroyed by encroachment and poor planning for ground water recharge.We have luxury of water as urban citizen at the cost of rural areas.The cities will have existence, if water is there. Land without water is of what value? We need to understand. Water is being brought from long distances to urban areas. This would lead rural –urban divide as rural economy will be adversely affected.
FUTURE WATER SCENARIO
Considering the present circumstances ,India faces a bleak water future. India might face a severe water crisis within the next two decades, Unless water management practices are changed/ improved on priority basis.Annual rainfall ranging from less than 500 to more than 1 500 mm can be found in most states in India. Very frequently most of the rain falls during a few months of the year, with little or no precipitation during the remaining months. There are states in which the annual and regional distribution of rainfall also differ significantly.
Due to the present situation water availability will be increses to 1 person out of 3.Water quality will become unsafe in majority of the places.No food to 1/3 of the population.Many water borne diseases like Fluorosis, Dementia, Diarrhea, Cancer etc. will be order of the day.
There will be fight for water between
- Man to man.
- City to city.
- State to state.
- Country to country
Possible third world war?
In 20th century if war was fought for oil, in 21 century it will be fought for drinking water. The alarming rate at which the ground water level is falling, is a wake up call to all. Instead of digging more and more bore wells and squeezing out the reserve water Mother Earth is saving for us, lets take the initiative of collecting rain water.