Use of Scarce Water - Water and Well-Being in India - 18th Dec 2017

    View this newsletter in full

No evidence of China diverting water of Siang: CWC

The national river water monitoring agency, Central Water Commission (CWC), has found no evidence of China diverting water of the Yarlung Tsangpo, which flows through southern Tibet into India, first as Siang in Arunachal Pradesh and then as Brahmaputra in Assam till it enters Bangladesh as Jamuna, to build dams. But, it has no conclusive reason why Siang has turned black due to cement-like slag, which has been flowing from across the McMohan line for over a month now. The contamination has also been noticed in Brahmaputra at different locations in Assam, hundreds of kilometers from Arunachal Pradesh. "CWC has been closely monitoring the water levels of Siang and Brahmaputra but there is no evidence of any diversion of the Yarlung Tsangpo as the water levels on Indian side have not changed," a central government official said.
15th Dec 2017 - Times of India

Some smart solutions to farm distress

Input usage can be brought down by using integrated farming methods in which there is a balance between preventive agronomic methods and some curative chemical methods without sacrificing yields and quality. Firstly, there is a need to reduce tillage and promote better soil structures. Minimum tillage helps prevent soil erosion. Secondly, soil structures, damaged because of indiscriminate use of chemical fertilisers, need to be restored. Biotechnology solutions like nitrogen-use efficiency gene and phosphorus-use efficiency gene reduce consumption of fertilisers significantly. NUE and PUE are in the regulatory system. If we can make them commercially available it can help in reduce fertiliser consumption, reduce cost and promote better soil structures.
14th Dec 2017 - Hindu Business Line

Pak SC asks cement company to refill water in Katas Raj temple pond

Pakistan's Supreme Court on Wednesday ordered a local cement factory to fill water in the pond of Katas Raj temple in Chakwal within a week, taking cognisance of reports that such factories had caused the drying of the water body. The Bestway Cement factory, which was asked to fill the pond of the Hindu shrine, is one of the four major cement production units in the area. A three-member SC bench headed by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar is hearing a suo motu case based on media reports that the pond is drying out due to water consumption by these factories. The factories are reportedly draining the pond through a number of wells which have reduced the subsoil water level the created shortages for domestic users as well.
13th Dec 2017 - Hindustan Times

ACB yet to prove role of Ajit Pawar, Tatkare in Rs 70,000 crore water projects

Exactly three years after chief minister Devendra Fadnavis granted permission to the Anti-Corruption Bureau to conduct an open probe against high profile NCP leaders Ajit Pawar and Sunil Tatkare, the agency is yet to establish their role in the irrigation scam. The Rs 70,000-crore scam was the main poll plank of the BJP in the 2014 Lok Sabha and assembly elections. In a related development, the Nagpur ACB on Tuesday filed four separate first information reports for rampant corruption and irregularities in the Gosikhurd irrigation project. Though the FIRs do not name Pawar or Tatkare, all the proposals were dealt by them at different stages.
13th Dec 2017 - Times of India

"Only way forward for Karnataka is to move to climate-resilient farming"

Israel is in the process of setting up 30 centres of excellence in different parts of India, including three in Karnataka, for promoting particular crop varieties, says the only way Karnataka and similar States can deal with adverse climatic conditions is total transformation from rain-fed agriculture to cent per cent climate-resilient agricultural system.
10th Dec 2017 - The Hindu

These solar canopies supply shade & electricity, as well as catch and filter rainwater

A pair of Indian entrepreneurs has developed what they claim is "the most advanced integrated plug and play system" for shade, water, and energy. Solar canopies and carports, which can provide shade underneath them while harvesting clean energy from the sunlight that hits them, can be a great asset in both public and private spaces, but the startup ThinkPhi goes one step further with its flagship product. The company's model 1080 not only produces renewable electricity from the sun (and stores it in integrated batteries), but it can also collect and filter rainwater.
5th Dec 2017 - Treehugger

Bundelkhand Lakes to be "encroachment free"

The CM said all the lakes of Sagar division comprising Tikamgarh, Chattarpur, Damoh and Sagar districts will be demarcated and the encroachments will be removed from the lakes. Land will be identified to dig up new ponds. Besides, check dams and stop dams will also be constructed, said Chouhan. The chief minister said that the government, society and organisations working in the field of water conservation will work together to "change the picture of Bundelkhand region", adding that every necessary step will be taken to revive the drying rivers of the region in view of the erratic rainfall pattern in the region
3rd Dec 2017 - Times of India

Bijepur village cries for attention

While most of the villagers are into farming, locals claim that there is no trace of irrigation facility here. It is the rains that decide the fate of farmers. Even as the villagers had been demanding construction of a check dam across river Utali, the officials at all levels chose to ignore the matter, locals added. “The check dam would have irrigated the agricultural fields in the village. But it is not on the agenda of the district administration or any political party. Moreover, the embankment of a bridge over river Utali is also getting eroded and despite apprising the officials of the impending threat, no action has yet been taken,” villagers complained.
24th Nov 2017 - The New Indian Express

Israeli technology to transform Indian agriculture

One of the most critical issues for the farming community is availability of water. Fresh water withdrawals are highest by the agricultural sector, and accounts for nearly 84-85 percent of water withdrawal in India, which is well above the global average. India and Israel have had a very strong partnership in Agriculture. Under the India-Israel Agriculture Project, Centre of Excellences were established in various states which are helping the farming fraternity in India to adopt the latest technologies such as micro irrigation systems.
22nd Nov 2017 - Economic Times