According to a study by Central Ground Water Board (CGWB), groundwater is fast depleting in Bhubaneswar. Trend of groundwater level between 2006 and 2015 showed that the level is decreasing during pre-monsoon season (January and April).
Normally water level increases during monsoon and post-monsoon season (August and November), but rise of water level during this season is very negligible in the city. Even some places like Khandagiri witnessed no rise.
The CGWB sources said groundwater level of Saheed Nagar was 4.44 metre in 2006, but it decreased to 5.30 metre in 2015. Similarly, Kapil Prasad and Raghunathpur’s level decreased from 6.15 m and 2.11 in 2006 to 7.10 m and 2.35 m in 2015. Water levels of other places are dipping as well.
The board’s compilation of decadal data said that the pre-monsoon depth to water level of the shallow aquifers (on which most of city’s dug wells are thriving) varies from 1.22 metre below ground level (mbgl) to a maximum of 11.30 mbgl with an average of around 4.77 mbgl.
The post-monsoon depth to water level of the shallow aquifers varies from 1.08 mbgl to a maximum of 9.02 mbgl with an average of around 4.38 mbgl.
The data between 2006 and 2015 showed that average water level of Saheed Nagar is 4.02 mbgl in April and 2.41 in August, while Khandagiri’s average water level in April and August is 12.95 mbgl and 10.99 mbgl respectively. It shows the depletion of water level of the city, said an expert.
However, this is the situation of the upper shallow aquifer (level of open wells) which shows a rosy picture. But the situation of water level of deep borewells is different.
In 2003, water level of deep borewells of Raj Bhawan area and AG Square was 20-27 metre and 30 metre respectively. The board will take next reading during end of this year.
The scientists assume that the level may fall down drastically.
Union water resources minister Uma Bharti had directed the CGWB to submit a report on depleting groundwater level in Puri. Though the situation is not alarming in Bhubaneswar, proper interventions arrest the crisis, said a scientist.
“Water level fluctuates during pre-monsoon and post-monsoon seasons,” said CGWB regional director D P Pati.
He said it is happening due to lack of groundwater recharge.
“Rise in concrete jungles and rapid urbanization don’t let the rainwater to infiltrate the soil and the weathered zones. The rainwater is just released to river through drains and sewerage channels instead of recharging groundwater,” he added.
He said rainwater harvesting will help in recharging groundwater of the city.
“We can use a number of methods like increase in water use efficiency, recycling and reuse of water and artificial recharge to groundwater, said Pati.
“We have to revive water bodies of the city and give some space to recharge groundwater instead covering the surface with concrete.”, he added.
Courtesy: Times of India