Catch the water in the hills during 4 months of monsoon, store the water in rivers and rivulets during next 4 months and the summer 4 months will have enough water.Shree Padre
The Summer Scorch
The Indian Peninsula is at the center of all researches with the advent of Summers and rightly so. Over the past decade, the average temperature in the country has been soaring with no intention to calm down. Similar has been the case with the recently concluded (yet heat waves continue to hit some parts of the country) Summer season. According to the research report by European Commission’s Global Drought Advisory, while food security is not an immediate concern, water shortage across the country affecting the farming sector the most is a matter of biggest concern.
According to reports from World Economic Forum, India has suffered its driest June in the last 5 years. Delayed monsoon has caused an emergency leading to lack of water availability which will affect the Indian economy in the months to follow. Agriculture contributes to 15% of Indian economy and water crisis could further lead to an economic slowdown.
Villagers have been observed to move in search of water as the pumps and wells have dried up. In another news, Chennai home to nearly 4 million, has experienced one of the worst droughts in its history with four of its water reservoirs depleting to nothingness.
Isn’t it curious how a place with worst flood hits in the past is now facing water drought? Can we do something, individually or by collaborating with the community around to minimize this risk? Let us see…
Barso Re Megha…
Scorching summer heat to Monsoons causing floods, the Indian Peninsula is known to scout the extremes from the books of weather possibilities. Monsoons play a vital role in the economy of our country and the market fluctuations depend, thus, a lot on what the forecasters have to say. In a recent report by the Weather Channel, early indicators of monsoon show that the monsoon not only will arrive late but will also experience a dip in the average amount of rain received by the subcontinent. This, indeed, has been true when even midway through the month of July, the temperatures have not dipped as much as one would have expected it to.
However, a recent study indicated that the southern Indian states are likely to receive its first breath of monsoon winds and charms by the end of July. While it will be respite to many of us, the incidents of floods are just a few weeks away from tabloids (some already being reported from Bihar).
Striking the Balance
A NITI Aayog research posits that 40% of the population in India will have minimum to no access to drinking water by 2030. This is an early indicator for us to gear up and start our efforts in order to conserve water at the earliest. Droughts in Summers to Floods in Monsoon – effective conservation of water received during the monsoon could help us greatly in the upcoming summer season.
Ground water level has been depleting and if running water during monsoons are fed to the ground, we can very help to improve the ground water level.
Let us try and strike a balance in order to prevent, if not completely eradicate, water shortage during the Summers in India.
This Monsoon is Yours
Here are some of the ways we could adopt in order to help conserve water during monsoon for a better summer next year –
- Installing Rainwater Harvesting System
Undoubtedly, the best way to conserve water is to harvest rainwater. Individual houses could setup rainwater harvesting system. The cost incurred for a house of 3000 sq. ft would cost anywhere between Rs. 2000 to Rs. 30,000. While this is the best way one could harvest rainwater, there are other cost-effective methods we can adopt to begin at a smaller scale.
For community living, efforts can be made to water rainwater harvesting system in place by community contributions like its done for festive celebrations and parties for new year’s eve.
- Promoting Ground Water Percolation
Water lost is drains during monsoon could be spread across empty ground to promote ground water percolation. This methodology can be adopted in conjunction with the rainwater harvesting system to store as much water as possible and the overflow to be able to help increase the ground water level.
- Using Faucet Aerators
Installing faucet aerators help to keep excess water usage in check as against normal faucets. Average cost Rs. 100- Rs. 400.
- Washing Machine Last Cycle
Water used in the last cycle of washing clothes in washing machine can be collected to be used for activities like floor cleaning
- Water Diversion
Water that cannot be collected could be used to divert to nearby water sources like lakes, ponds, and rivers.
Plant as many trees as possible during the rainy season. Increasing the green cover helps in increasing ground water level since water is held by the roots of trees. Also, the early stages of germination require more water making monsoon the best season to drive plantation initiatives.
- Installing Barrels
Water can be collected in barrels installed in open areas in households which could then be used for different household uses. To prevent mosquito or insect breeding, mesh could be installed on the water surface. A few drops of oil could also help solve the purpose.
- Installing Rain Saucers
Rain Saucers help increase the water catchment area over the barrels or collection centres installed in households. You can so as small or as large with the use of rain saucers. The cost of such saucers could range any where between a few 100s to 10,000 Rs. Saucers could also made at home!
Uses of Collected Rain Water
- Toilet flushing
- Floor Swiping
- Household cleaning
- Car Washing
While most of the to-dos mentioned above are applicable to households, a few methods could also be applied for communities which would require integrated efforts from everyone. It is time that we take the matter in our control and contribute in the best possible way for a better summer next year.