Water crisis – Are we ready Bangaloreans ?

Water crisis – Are we ready Bangaloreans ?

Water crisis is looming on Bengaluru.  The city  is facing an acute water shortage and among the worst hit are newly-developed areas and IT corridors.

The fact that Bengaluru is under “water stress or water crisis” cannot be denied. The term is used to refer to pressure on water resources which causes problems like shortages.

According to a study by Indian Institute of Science (IISc), namma Bengaluru the city will become inhabitable in the next few years if its population continues to grow at this alarming rate. This population growth has put a strain on the city’s natural resources and led to the depletion of lakes and wells.

Coalition for water security  is needed :

Ground water levels have dried up to an extent that now water crisis is no longer a problem else where but here.  It has come knocking at our doorsteps.  Apartments in the city have almost run out of water and with being no rains the situation is very grim. 

Need of the hour is to the metro city like Benglauru should learn to manage their water needs through local resources instead of demanding the same from distant places. 

Water management to overcome water crisis problem :

Officials and experts admit the growth of the city has put pressure on its water resources, particularly because in the last few years alone more than 100 villages have been absorbed into this rapidly expanding metropolis, known as India’s Silicon Valley.

Water management is very crucial to Bengaluru.  Sustainable water management steps includes effective rain water harvesting, widespread ground water recharging.  The most basic step being management of available water resources among others. 

The average rainfall in Bengaluru is considered enormous from the State’s average rainfall context and if the same is managed effectively and responsibly, we can make the city self-sufficient.   

It is time to start de-congesting Bengaluru and to develop other towns of the State.

Over exploitation of natural resources :

A recent report has said the south Indian city of Bangalore could be doomed, like Cape Town in South Africa, to face the threat of running out of drinking water.

The demand by Bengaluru city on natural resources of the state cannot be allowed to continue to rise perpetually.

It is not only the water resources in Bengaluru, which is under serious threat but different elements of the nature all over the State.  The natural resources of the State which are now being over-exploited at an alarming pace, must be adequately protected. 

Demand for water :

The demand for water had almost tripled recently as borewells are drying up.  The major problem is borewells that we draw water are drying up, leading to a severe demand and supply gap.  The decreasing levels of group water put water tankers in the limelight as most residential areas in the city depend of these tankers for drinking water.

Due to the unavailability of other sources of water has led to deep-rooted tanker business that is monopolizes and uses the citizen’s helplessness to their advantage with unauthorized high prices. 

Apart from the scarcity of water and the exorbitant prices of these tankers, the water provided by these tankers is of poor quality and unhygienic.

Bengaluru Topography – water crisis :

Bengaluru the city is a dry, elevated plateau that was made habitable by the wisdom of the natives, who planted trees and forests to attract rains, and built lakes to harvest rain water. The fallacy of modern engineering approach in problem solving has reversed this wisdom and made the situation worse in the past 50-100 years.

Each year, as Bengaluru’s water decreases and population increases, the government is faced with the daunting task of ensuring that water reaches all. Due to the problem of water mafias and infrastructure that has not kept pace with time, the common man is the worst hit.

Causes for water crisis :

Years of rapid urbanization, a swelling population and poor water management have led to drying taps, falling groundwater levels and filth-frothed lakes that can burst into flames.

The city is paying a heavy price for its success since marketing itself as a tech hub in the late 1990s.

While job opportunities have soared in the sprawling city, millions have no piped water and instead rely on an army of privately-run tankers that suck water from wells inside and outside the city and deliver it to homes.

Dead lakes :

One of Bengaluru’s  problems is a lack of water storage.  Monsoon downpours take just minutes to spurt through Bengaluru’s overburdened pipes and onto the streets.

The city floods rapidly because only 4% to 9% of its rainfall seeps into natural aquifers that hold water underground.

Bengaluru was built around a series of lakes that acted as rainwater reservoirs and recharged the aquifers, providing a renewable source of water.

But the lakes have been under attack by urbanization, encroached by real estate projects and left foaming and frothing as toxic effluents, sewage and trash produced by industries and homes fill them.

‘Scary’ Future :

A business-as-usual attitude and lack of political will threaten Bengaluru’s ability to deal with growing water threats.

The South African city of Cape Town’s countdown in 2017 to a “Day Zero”, when taps were predicted to run dry, highlights the risks that lie ahead for many Indian cities. 

Chennai scenario :

Bangaloreans does not want to face the Chennai scenario.  Chennai is a city gone dry due to water crisis.  The situation is Chennai is when natural causes meet the man-date ones.

Chennai’s four main reservoirs are at a storage level of less than 1%.  Chennai used to be water-surplus metropolitan cities of the country till a couple of decades ago. Following the age-old water conservation tradition of Tamil Nadu, Chennai had nearly two dozen water bodies including three rivers and a British period Buckingham canal. Today, it is reduced to half a dozen.

After seeing the grim situation at Chennai, hope Bangaloreans will wake up now.

Conclusion :

Wake up Bengaluru.  It is not very far when you open the tap and only air comes out of it. 

Individuals and government bodies need to work together for this common goal and our decisions today will decide whether Bengaluru will lose it water war or gain water security.

If both the government and citizens take conserving water seriously, one can change the tide of crisis.

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