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India’s groundwater security – a growing concern

Aurélien Sostaponti - 26-mars-2019 11:40:42
  According to the World Health Organization, a country having less than 1700m 3 per capita water availability is said to be a «  water-stressed  » country. With about 4 per cent of the water resources of the world, India should have been a water-adequate nation. However, in 2011 India turned into a water-stressed nation, according to experts.   The immediate culprits that come to mind are the increasing demographic pressure, rapid urbanization and industrialization. However, urbanization and industrialisation are the driving forces for any developing economy like India and remains the need of the hour. What makes these driving forces evil is the lack of proper water management.           RAINFALL WASTAGE   65%   rainwater runoff goes into the sea, which is a major wastage considering that over 70 per cent of country’s farming is rain-fed. The runoff also causes soil erosion, river flooding and siltation of water bodies.   Source: Bhartiya Agro Industries Foundation   POOR SANITATION   5.2%   of India’s gross domestic product worth of economic opportunities were lost in 2015 because of poor sanitation. It is almost half of the total global losses. Poor sanitation results in water contamination that leads to widespread diseases and wastage of public resources Source: Report ‘True Cost of Sanitation’   DEPLETING GROUNDWATER   253 billion cubic metres   is the amount of groundwater extracted in India annually, which is the highest in the world. Fifty-four percent of India’s groundwater wells have declined over the past seven years, and 21 major cities are expected to run out of groundwater by 2020   Source : UNESCO World Water Development Report             As a step towards resolving the groundwater depletion problem, the Central Ground Water Authority of the Union Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation on December 12, 2018 notified revised guidelines for ground water extraction which will take effect on June 1, 2019. These revised guidelines provide for the:   Encouraged use of recycled and treated sewage water by industries. Provision of action against polluting industries. Mandatory requirement of digital flow meters, piezometers and digital water level recorders, with or without telemetry depending upon quantum of extraction. Mandatory water audit by industries abstracting ground water 500 m3/day or more in safe and semi-critical area and 200 m3/day or more in critical and over-exploited assessment units. Mandatory roof top rain water harvesting except for specified industries. Measures to be adopted to ensure prevention of ground water contamination in premises of polluting industries/ projects.   One of the important features of the revised guidelines is the introduction of the concept of Water Conservation Fee (WCF), the fee charged on extraction of ground water. The high rates of WCF are expected to discourage setting up of new industries in over-exploited and critical areas as well as may limit large scale ground water extraction by industries, especially in over-exploited and critical areas.    
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Sophie Clavelier, Country Head   Welcome to the French Trade Commission Business France in India!     Our key mission is to promote trade relations between France and India. We assist French- based companies seeking potential partners and new markets in India, while helping Indian businesses to identify potential French suppliers, commercial and technical partners.   In India, our 4 offices are located in business hubs, New Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Chennai. We have a dedicated multicultural team of 38 experts in the following growing sectors: Agrofood Industry Industry and Cleantech Lifestyle and Healthcare Tech & Services Our Trade Commission also has a Press office in charge of helping French companies to communicate in India as well as a Market Access Department enabling them to better understand and adjust to the Indian regulatory and fiscal framework. In

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