Groundwater irrigation report by IIM-A

GN Bureau | February 8, 2010




An IIM-Ahmedabad report says that groundwater irrigation is heading for a crisis in India as the number of irrigation blocks is increasing at an alarming rate of 5.5 percent per year.

It says over-extraction has caused the water table to fall by as much as 40 to 60 meters in many places. Heavy dependence on ground-water-fed irrigation may lead to food crisis and will have very serious implications for the growth and development of the agriculture sector in India, as well as alleviation of poverty in India.

The report says, in many parts of country extraction of groundwater has exceeded annual renewable recharge and with an increasingly unpredictable climate, there is simply no guarantee that the depleted groundwater will be replenished.

Groundwater is India’s lifeline as it meets 60 percent of irrigation in the country.

The paper highlights the need for regulatory and replenishment measures as also the urgency to define water rights. It says the drilling for wells must be stopped completely and that community-based action is required for the efficient use of water resources.

To see the full report click on the link below:
http://www.iimahd.ernet.in/publications/data/2009-03-08Gandhi.pdf

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