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Central Ground Water Board(CGWB) is aiming to strengthen its existing network of hydrograph monitoring stations for a better assessment of the situation of groundwater in Delhi.
About the status of groundwater exploitation in India
India is home to 16% of the world’s population, but only holds 4% of the world’s freshwater resources. Not only is water scarce in India, but the extraction of groundwater has been on the rise for decades.
Since the 1960s, the government’s support for the “green revolution” to ensure food security has increased the demand for groundwater for agriculture.
Moreover, rapid rural electrification combined with the availability of modern pump technologies has led to an increase in the number of borewells to meet that demand.
The Central Groundwater Board of India estimates that about 17% of groundwater blocks are overexploited (meaning the rate at which water is extracted exceeds the rate at which the aquifer is able to recharge).
The over-exploited areas are mostly concentrated in the north-western part of the country, including parts of Punjab, Haryana, Delhi and western Uttar Pradesh.
What is the CGWB doing to monitor the situation of groundwater exploitation?
Major activities taken up by CGWB include a) macro/micro-level ground water management studies, b) monitoring of groundwater levels and water quality through piezometers, c) implementation of demonstrative schemes for artificial recharge and rainwater harvesting for recharge augmentation and d) Periodic assessment of replenishable groundwater resources of the country is carried out by the Board jointly with the concerned State Government agencies.
Source: This post is based on the article “How central agency is looking to strengthen network for monitoring groundwater situation” published in TOI on 22nd February 2022.