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Water Crisis

Water is one of the most important natural resources for life on Earth. About 97% of the world is surrounded by water and only 3% of this is pure water, which can be used for agriculture, agriculture and other uses. A water shortage situation occurs when the maximum number of integrated needs from all water use sectors exceeds the available availability, under existing infrastructure conditions. From Cape Town to sub-Saharan Africa to major Asian cities, there is a global water crisis affecting millions of people. Water scarcity affects all continents and was listed by the World Economic Forum in 2019 as one of the biggest threats to the world in terms of potential impact over the next decade.

According to the UN estimates, 844 million people worldwide do not have access to clean water, resulting in families and communities being trapped in poverty for generations. Among these, women and children are most affected – children because they are at risk of contracting contaminated water and women and girls because they often carry the burden of carrying their families water for an estimated 200 million hours each day. Recognizing the importance of solving the global water crisis, the United Nations views March 22, as World Water Day each year.

India’s water crisis
India, the second most populous country in the world, has a diverse population which is thrice the size of the US

but lives in one third of the world’s area. Water use in various sectors of India is increasing, driven by a combination of population growth, social and economic development and changing water use patterns.

Geographically, there are significant differences in the country in terms of water availability. About 71 percent of India’s water sources are located in only 36 percent of the area while the remaining 64 percent have to do with 29 percent of the available water (India’s Water Future Report 2050; Verma & Phansalkar Report). Irrigation is probably the most important input in agricultural production compared to all other key inputs such as seeds, fertilizers, etc. Like all countries with high agricultural production, excessive use of water in food production depletes the water table as a whole.

India has made great strides in both the availability and quality of municipal drinking water systems, however, due to population growth and rapid urban growth in India, water scarcity is a close problem in many of the major cities across the country. India’s water demand is expected to continue to increase at the same rate until 2050, including an increase of 20 to 30% above the current level of water use. This could be largely due to increased demand in the industrial and domestic sectors. Moreover, as the population is expected to reach 1.6 billion at the same time, the water shortage situation, in turn, will continue to deteriorate in the future. Therefore, sustainable management is essential to protect the aquatic environment and to meet growing water needs in the future.

Counting the Indian water crisis
Many parts of India are fortunate to have wet climates, even in the harshest climates. In these areas, rainwater harvesting may be the only solution for water collection. In India, rainwater harvesting has been in operation for more than 4,000 years. It is an easy way to collect and store rainwater for drinking, irrigation, and livestock water.

Rainwater harvesting and management has great potential to reduce stormwater runoff and reduce groundwater consumption, especially in urban areas. These systems serve as amazing support systems in many Indian cities by providing an alternative alternative to water supply, especially during the dry seasons. The widespread inclusion of these systems also rehabilitates the earth’s natural resources, helping to improve the quality of groundwater, increasing its quality, and preventing wells and piping resources from drying up. In addition, efficient deployment of rainwater harvesting systems reduces water flow, reduces soil erosion, and increases fertility.

In almost every province in India, it has forced the collection of rainwater from government facilities, commercial enterprises, and high-rise apartment buildings. Some of these laws have come into effect, and others will follow soon. The Central Department of Drinking and Sanitation, in collaboration with the Central Ground Water Board, has prepared a concept document called ‘Master Plan for Artificial Recharge to Ground Water in India’. The master plan aims to build an estimated 23 lakh rainwater harvesting facilities in rural areas, and is close to the construction of 88 lakh chemical and rainwater harvesting facilities in urban areas.

Water conservation in the agricultural sector is important because water is needed for plant and crop growth. Only part of the rain or irrigation water is absorbed by the plants, which remains in the deep underground water, or loses the high evaporation. In India’s arid and arid regions, the ‘Tank System’ has traditionally been the backbone of agricultural production. ‘Tank System’ means large tanks constructed by joining or digging down to collect rainwater, monitor water flow and accumulate run-off. Simple methods like these can be used to reduce the demand for irrigation land. Therefore, by improving water efficiency, and reducing evaporation, the need for agricultural water can be reduced.

Israeli agricultural model
Israel has always been a role model for the world in water conservation. It handles about 94% of its wastewater and returns about 90 percent of the water back into the system. Israel also takes the lead in turning seawater into freshwater plants. About 50% of Israel’s waters are man-made, seawater.

Geography of the country is not in harmony with nature in agriculture. More than half of the land is desert, and climate and lack of water resources make agriculture unpopular, making up only 20% of the arable land. For decades Israel has been investing in the R&D of effective irrigation technology such as irrigation systems. It is a type of small irrigation system that has the potential to conserve water and nutrients by allowing water to trickle down to the roots of plants. In a country constantly challenged by water scarcity, the use of small-scale irrigation technology has not only turned Israel into a self-sufficient agricultural economy, but also a major supplier of new products and a world leader in agricultural technology.

The conclusion
Water plays a key role in all sectors of the economy and is critical to achieving sustainable development. Pressures on natural water resources will continue to increase as demand for water increases and the effects of climate change become stronger. Water scarcity will be a major cause of future political unrest in India and around the world. The adoption of various new technologies such as the suspension of desalination facilities, the use of small-scale irrigation technology and re-investment in tested methods such as rainwater harvesting will help build a strong infrastructure to ensure a watery future. However, technology alone will not suffice. In a troubled world under major water crisis, cities and communities will need to know more and change their attitudes