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GroundwaterLifeLineoftheNation

Weknowthat,groundwateristhewaterthatpercolatesintothegroundthroughjointsandcracksinrocks.Itisnecessary
to have soft, permeable rocks that allow water to percolate into the ground. This water gets stored to porous rocks
underground.ThiscategoryofwaterispresentbeneathEarthssurfaceinporespacesformedbysoilandinthefracturesof
rock formations. The underground soil or rock through which groundwater can easily move is called an aquifer.
Groundwater can be accessed by digging wells, tube wells and even through artesian well. Water is trapped in saucer
shapedperviousrocks,sandwichedbetweentwolayersofimperviousrocks insome partsoftheworld.Asectionofthe
pervious rocks reaches the Earths surface. Rain falling on the ground seeps through this section and hence, fills the
perviousrocks.Aboringmadetotakethewateroutknownasanartesianwell.

Many rural and agricultural regions, their associated cultures and populations around the world have considered
groundwaterastheirlifeline.Nearlyhalfoftheworldsdrinkingwaterandmuckoftheworldsirrigationwaterissupplied
by groundwater resources. A study showed that approximately 97 per cent of the worlds water resource is not fit for
humanconsumptionanduse.Itistheremaining3percentoffreshwaterresourcesthatisusedformosthumanneeds.Of
these,alargepartislockedawayinicecapsandglaciers.Itisthewaterinrivers,lakes,ponds,etc.andwaterunderthe
ground(calledgroundwater)thatismostprecioustohumansforsurvival.Groundwaterisavaluableresourcethroughout
theworld.Wheresurfacewaterresourcesarescarceorinaccessible,groundwatersuppliesmanyofthehydrologicneedsof
people.About halfof the worlds population &mostofthe ruralpopulation are dependent on groundwater for drinking
purposes.

Waterscarcityappearstobeamajorenvironmentalconcernasmostcountriesfaceashortfallinsomeregionortheother.
Droughtpronecountries,especiallyinAfricaandAsia,aretheworsthitbecausemostofthemhavethehighestpopulations
too.Whilewaterneedsareincreasing,thewaterresourcesarefixed.Thisputsamajorstrainontheexistingresources.In
many urban areas, groundwater levels are dangerously low as usage exceeds the rate of recharge. Sewage, industrial
chemicals, and agricultural pesticides are increasingly contaminating water resources. Often, the impurities in drinking
waterfarexceedthepermissiblelimits.Indiaisacountryrichinwaterresources,beingendowedwithanetworkofrivers
andthelargesnowcoverintheHimalayanrangethatcanmeetavarietyofwaterrequirementsofthecountry.Thecountry
isliterallycrisscrossedwithriversandblessedwithhighprecipitationmainlyduetothesouthwestmonsoon.Withgrowing
urbanisationandindustrialisationalongwithrapidincreaseinthepopulationofthecountry,thewaterresourcesinvarious
parts of the country are getting depleted and the water quality has deteriorated drastically. This mainly happens due to
discharge of untreated sewage, the industrial and agricultural effluents. With growing urbanisation and industrialisation
Indiafacesthechallengeofprovidingcleanandsafedrinkingwatertoallcitizens.Inthenameofeconomicgrowthmost
riversandstreamsareturningintosewers.Asmoreandmoreriversaregettingpolluted,themunicipalitiesarefindingit
difficulttotreatwater,eithergroundwaterorriverwater,tosafelevelsandsupplyittocitizens.Dirtywateristheworlds
biggesthealthrisk,andcontinuestothreatenbothqualityoflifeandpublichealth.Manyofourwaterresourcesalsolack
basic protections. This makes them vulnerable to pollution from factory farms and industrial plants. This can lead to
drinkingwatercontamination,habitatdegradationandbeachclosures.

Alongtermwaterleveldeclinecausedbysustainedgroundwaterpumpingandregularusewithnoprecautionsisknownas
groundwaterdepletionwhichhasbecomesocialandakeyissueamongsttheyouthnowadays.Groundwateristhebiggest
hope for the nations survival. Groundwater is a thing that can be easily polluted by any one of several sources and
pollutants. Industries of paper, textile, leather, paint, etc. produce wastes containing highly toxic substances like lead,
mercury,arsenicortheircompounds.Inmodernagriculture,largequantitiesofpesticidesandfertilisersareused.Excessof
theseinorganicchemicalseitherfindstheirwaytowaterbodiesormixeswiththerainsandgraduallyseepsintotheground
andfinallypollutethegroundwater.Exploitationofanaturalresourcesometimeshasunintendedconsequences.Thebest
exampleforthisstatementwouldbetheexampleofcoaldepositsundergoingstripmining.Whencoaldepositsundergo
stripmining,theflowofgroundwatermaybedisturbed,causingwellstodryup.Notonlythesebutmanyfactorssuchas
domesticwaste,poorsewagetreatment,humanactivities,lessnumberoftreesandplants,etc.areequallyresponsiblefor
thedepletionandpollutionofthegroundwater.Themostsignificant,colossalorthemajorproblem,whatsoeveryousay,
istheincreasingpopulationoftheworld.Themorethepopulation,themoretheconsumptionofresourceswillbethere.
Afterall,whatisgroundwaterasourceofwateroratoy?Groundwaterisnotatoywhichcanbebought,brokenandthe
thrownawayjust like any other material. We all aretheregicides ofgroundwater.We all agree that groundwater is the
lifelineofthenation.Withoutgroundwaternomankindcanliveonthisearthaswecannotdependallthetimeonlakes,
seasandoceans.Oneofthemostsatisfyingreasonsforneglectingothersourcesofisthattheycontainalargeamountof
saltsandimpuritiesascomparedtogroundwaterandrivers.Ontheotherhand,ifwetalkaboutglaciers,wecannotmelt
suchagargantuanamountoficeandsnow.Advanceactionsshouldbetakenandstrictrulesshouldbeimplementedbythe
government, no matter which so ever country it is. Some rules that can be impended by a government should be, for
example, a groundwater providing committee can pump a limited amount of groundwater at a time, no person either a
tycoon in an industry or any other person should not be allowed to pump groundwater on personal basis, etc. Regular
monitoring of the water and its resources is essential to ensure the quality of water. The government should spread
awareness on the problems not only related to groundwater but also other water problems, whether minor or major
amongsttheyouthsothattheycangiveparticipationtotheproblemsonpersonalbasis.Groundwateraquifers mustbe
allowedtorecharge,sothatwaterresourcesdonotgetexhausted.Oftenreforestationschemesworkhandinhandwith
waterconservation,astreesallowforbetterrechargeofgroundwater.Nowadays,rainwaterharvestingisanotherstepin
thisdirection.Waterisaprimeresource.Justasweplanincomeandexpenditureinafinancebudget,weneedtohavea
waterbudgettoo.Wemustplanutilisationofourwaterresourcestoderivemaximumbenefit.

The problem of depletion & pollution also continues with other natural resources also. The decreasing quantity of the
naturalresourcesisnotgoodforthehumankindatall.Moderncivilisationandlifeitselfdependsonnaturalresources,so
weneedtobeconcernedaboutwhethertherewillbeenoughtosustaindevelopmentnotjustforpeoplenow,butalso
for the future generations. Today, with the steady growth of population and the increase in production, the need for
conservation of our natural assets is greater than ever. As of now, we are overdependent on nonrenewable resources.
Even if natural resources are conserved and developed properly, the Earth will be unable to provide enough food if the
populationkeepsincreasingatanalarmingrate.

Thegrowthoftheworldpopulationmustbecontrolledtoallowforabetterqualityoflifeandsustainablemanagementof
resources.Anunderstandingofresourcesisvitaltotheirmanagementofresourcestomaintainandenhancethequalityof
theenvironmentwillnotonlymeettheneedsofpresentgenerations,butalsosustaindevelopmentinthetimestocome.
Governmentregulationcancontrolthisdamagetotheenvironmentbyreducingtheemissionofpoisonoussubstancesand
adoptingproperwastemanagementtechniques.Peoplemustlookforalternativestoresourcesthatarebecomingscarce.
Eachofusmusttakeresponsibilityforouractionsandattitudesaswell.Wemustavoiddisastrouschangesinecosystems
evenaswetrytoincreaseagriculturallanduse,forestry,fishingandwaterdevelopment.Thefightagainstpollutionmust
alsobecomeapeoplesmovement,asthestatehasbeenunabletocontrolwaterpollution.Eachoneofusmustlearnto
takecareofourenvironment.