Thursday, May 12, 2011

5th Meeting of the Advisory Council on Artificial Recharge to Groundwate

Recharge to Groundwater Concludes with many Suggestions
The 5th meeting of the Advisory Council on Artificial Recharge to Ground Water concluded here today under the Chairmanship of Shri Salman Khurshid, Minister for Water Resources. Organized by the Ministry of Water Resources at Vigyan Bhawan Annexe, the meeting was attended by eminent NGOs, VOs and Principal Secretaries of the State Governments, besides senior officers from the Ministry of Water Resources and Organizations attached to it. Shri Vincent H. Pala, Minister of State for Water Resources, was also present.

Addressing the meeting, Shri Salman Khurshid emphasized the importance of an integrated approach to Ground Water management and said effective recharge of Ground Water is crucial to ensuring a continuous and sustainable water supply. He suggested that future meetings of the Council should be held in a place where a successful Ground Water Recharge project is running – whether by Governmental effort or by individual/organizational initiative so as to highlight the practicality of the suggestions being given by experts on Ground Water Recharge.

Shri Khurshid and Shri Pala also released two publications, brought out by the Central Ground Water Board, on the occasion: ‘Ground Water scenario in major cities of India’ and ‘Rain Water Harvesting and Artificial Recharge’.

Advisory Council on Artificial Recharge to Ground Water was constituted on 17th April, 2006 with the objectives to identify priority areas and area- specific technologies for Artificial Recharge in coordination with various Central /State organizations, NGOs, Industries / Stakeholders etc., along with creation of awareness, education, capacity building, funding strategies and periodic review of actions taken by the Centre and States.

The agenda for the 5th meeting of the Council focused on Ground Water management in urban areas, studies required in areas on diminishing ground water quality, aquifers of coastal areas, inter-layered aquifers containing good and poor quality water and aquifers vulnerable to pollution. A number of Members of the Council raised the issue of encroachment/disappearance of the water bodies in urban areas and wanted a coordinated approach by the Centre and the States to tackle this menace which is jeopardizing the water safety in the urban areas. The Advisory Council has given a number of suggestions for better and sustainable management of Ground Water resources, including widening the scope of the Council from merely ‘Artificial Recharge’ to the entire gamut of ‘Recharge’.

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