7 Lakes that are drying up in India
India is facing a looming water crisis despite being surrounded by water on three sides. The country has just four per cent of the world’s total freshwater resources while hosting more than 16 per cent of the world’s population.
In 2018, NITI Aayog published a report stating that 600 million Indians, at least half of the country’s population, are facing a severe water crisis.
Three-quarters of households in India do not have access to safe piped drinking water, leading them to rely on potentially unsafe water sources that pose a significant health risk. This highlights the urgent need for sustainable and equitable water management policies to ensure adequate access to clean water for all.
Chennai, a city with a population of nearly five million, is facing a severe water crisis as its main reservoir, Lake Puzhal, is drying up, according to satellite surveys from June 2019.
The city’s four main water reservoirs are nearly depleted, forcing four million people to depend on undrinkable water from makeshift wells. Chennai Metro Water has reduced its water supply by 40%.
Despite the fact that the situation worsened for several weeks, the government has been criticized for not taking timely measures and relying solely on the monsoon season to alleviate the water crisis.
However, the monsoon rains have been unreliable and late for several years in a row, leaving millions of people without access to water. Additionally, devastating heat waves have swept across the country, killing hundreds.
Rainfall runoff doesn’t reach many lakes
The country is going to face an unprecedented water crisis. The shrinking lakes in most parts of the country also testify to this.
The Wular lake in Kashmir is the largest freshwater lake in India. By 1980, the Wullar lake was spread over 202 square kilometers. Today, this lake has shrunk by two-thirds to just 74 sq km.
Dal Lake, known as Srinagar, has been steadily shrinking since the 1960s. In the records of the year 1900, the size of Dal Lake is 26 sq km. Today the lake is reduced to just 11.5 sq km.
The identity of Nainital district of Uttarakhand may not be shrinking in size Naini lake, but its depth is continuously decreasing. According to environmentalist doctor Sujata Bisht, the lake had a depth of 96 meters in 1987. Now the depth is reduced to 27 meters. The rest of the lakes in the district are also in trouble.
This lake, which falls in the Puri district of Odisha, is the second largest lake in India. This lake is also a confluence of sweet and salt water. According to local residents, the maximum depth of Chilka Lake was 3-6 meters 30-40 years ago. Today it has been reduced to only one and a half meter.
The famous lake Bhoja Tal of Bhopal, the capital of Madhya Pradesh, is also constantly shrinking. In the satellite images of 2017, Bhoja Tal was spread over 2400 hectares. In 2019, the tal was reduced to just 700 hectares.
This lake in Bengaluru made headlines for the first time in 2015, when it became very foamy and smoke started to rise. Due to encroachment, this lake has lost 95 percent of its share in the last 20 years. In some places it looks like a drain.
Lost lakes of chennai
Researchers at Chennai’s Anna University claimed, based on the city map of 1893, that there were more than 60 lakes and ponds in the center of Madras at one time. Due to indiscriminate urbanization, only seven big lakes are left in Chennai. Groundwater in the city land has almost gone.
- Mystic Dal Lake turning into a swamp lake due to pollution
- Dal lake and Wular Lake’s water holding capacity reduced by 40 to 70%
- Lake Michigan condition amid winter storm
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