Water. Crisis of a Blue Planet. Freshwater on Earth is dwindling away too fast…. Where in earth all the waters are?. Is the Earth not really watery?. The Earth indeed is WATERY!. 70-75% of the Earth\'s surface is covered with water. But this is no relief!. 97% of all Earth’s
Crisis of a Blue Planet
Freshwater on Earth is dwindling away too fast….
Is the Earth not really watery?
70-75% of the
But this is no relief!
water is in the
Leaving us in a FRESHWATERdeficit situation!
It reminds us of what ancient mariner
Marco Polo once said
Water water everywhere not is single drop to drink!
only 3% Freshwater
Out of the 3% of the fresh water that the Earth has, 2% remains in a frozenstate in glaciers and icecaps of the polar region and Greenland
2% is in
Meager 1% of freshwater available in liquid form
Where in Earth
all the liquid
How much of Earth\'s water is usable by humans?
Water usable by humans
Life on Earth is
Only this portion!
Only 0.3 % !
99.7 % UNUSABLE
Glaciers at polar ice caps
Freshwater is defined as water with less than 0.5 parts per thousand dissolved salts. Freshwater bodies include lakes and ponds, rivers, some bodies of underground water and many kinds of man-made freshwater bodies, such as canals, ditches and reservoirs. The ultimate source of freshwater is the precipitation of atmosphere in the form of rain and snow (Water Cycle)
Free-flowing rivers provide several necessities. They\'re an important source of drinking water and irrigation for communities. They carry sediments that help create coastal wetland features such as marshes that provide habitats for many animal and plants. They also renew the supply of oxygen that fish and other aquatic life need to breathe.
It is estimated that the volume of groundwater comprises 30.1% of all freshwater resource on earth compared to 0.3% in surface freshwater. 1.5 billion people all over the world depend on Groundwater for drinking water
A balancing act of nature called
So the water on which our lives thrive are the ‘freshwater’ provided by GROUNDWATER which is so negligible [ only 0.3% of the total World Water ] in quantity and which we don’t see! These water under the ground are the Groundwater.
Amazingly, many people use groundwater but they don\'t even know it.
The agricultural sector is the largest user of water globally
and accounts for about 70% of the total freshwater
abstraction. Presently, industry accounts for 22% of the
global freshwater consumption. However, water consumption by industries is increasing, and likely to double over the next two decades. In fact, in high income countries, industrial water use already accounts for as much as 59% of the total fresh water consumption. The volume of water consumed per year by industry is estimated to be 1,170 km3/year by 2025.
People, especially in rural areas, are increasingly dependent on groundwater – up to 2 billion people, a third of the world’s population rely on it.
97%of liquid freshwater is stored underground in aquifers within a few kilometers [mostly 2.4 kms] of the Earth’s surface almost everywhere, beneath hills, mountains, plains, and deserts.
Groundwater is stored in the ground in materials like gravel or sand. It\'s kind of like the earth is a big sponge holding all that water. Water can also move through rock formations like sandstone or through cracks in rocks.
An area that holds a lot of water, which can be pumped up with a well, is called an aquifer. Wells pump groundwater from the aquifer and then pipes deliver the water to cities, houses in the country, or to crops.
Aquifer –permeable rock or sediment that transmits water in a quantity great enough to be of use.
One inch of rain on one acre of ground results in 27,192 gallons of water (~100,000 L).
Material saturated with water lies below the water table.
Materials that conduct water (are porous and permeable) are aquifers.
Materials that do not conduct water (are well-cemented, unfractured, etc.) are aquicludesor confining layers.
Is a Geologic unit that can store and transmit enough water to be a significant water resource
- Large volume [ in relation to the amounts being removed annually]
- Moderately high porosity
- Facilitate easy movement of water toward a well
Groundwater and surface water sometimes trade places. Groundwater can move through the ground and into a lake or stream. Water in a lake can soak down into the ground and become groundwater.
Water infiltrating the ground is recharge.
Groundwater flowing out from the ground is discharge.
Springs form where groundwater is forced up and onto the surface through openings in the ground.This is caused by the differences in the slope or "hydraulic gradient" in the aquifer. As rain falls and percolates underground, it exerts pressure on the water already in the aquifer, forcing some to the surface through natural openings. Springs are classified or categorized based on the amount water discharge.For example, in USA,the largest springs likeWakulla andSilver Springsare classified as"magnitude 1"springs which means they each dischargesmore than 65 million gallons of watera day - the equivalent of about1.3 million bathtubs full!SPRINGS
Low permeability layer
Groundwater is forced up onto the
The surface through openings
In the ground
Perched aquifers are common, since the geology of the near-surface can be fairly complex. Parts of an aquifer can become perched as a result of slight variations in the clay content of sediments.
Clay-rich sediments tend to be impermeable.
When groundwater flows into streams they are called effluent.
When the water table drops, streams become influent,
and water leaks from the stream bed into the ground.
Groundwater comes from rain, snow, sleet, and hail that soaks into the ground. The water moves down into the ground because of gravity, passing between particles of soil, sand, gravel, or rock until it reaches a depth where the ground is filled, or saturated, with water. The area that is filled with water is called the saturated zone and the top of this zone is called the water table. The water table may be very near the ground\'s surface or it may be hundreds of feet below.
Gravity:Ground water slowly moves underground, generally at a downward angle (because of gravity), and may eventually seep into streams, lakes, and oceans.
The rocks below our feet:The rock below the Earth’s surface is the bedrock. But Earth’s bedrock consists of 23 many types of rock, such as sandstone, granite, and limestone. Bedrocks have varying amounts of void spaces in them where ground water accumulates and can also become broken and fractured; creating spaces that can fill with water. Some bedrock, such as limestone, is dissolved by water — which results in large cavities that fill with water. Most of the void spaces in the rocks below the water table are filled with water. But rocks have different porosity and permeability characteristics, and water does not move around the same way in all rocks.
Earth. Deep in the bedrock there are rock layers made of dense
material, such as granite, or material that water has a hard time
penetrating, such as clay. These layers may be underneath the
porous rock layers and, thus, act as a confining layer to retard
the vertical movement of water. Since it is more difficult for
the water to go any deeper, it tends to pool in the porous layers
and flow in a more horizontal direction across the aquifer
When the water around is looked at, water in streams, rivers, and lakes is seen, which is known as “surface water.”However, there is much more water stored under the ground than on the surface. In fact, some of the water seen flowing in rivers comes from seepage of ground water into river beds. Water from precipitation continually seeps into the ground to recharge the aquifers, while at the same time water from underground aquifers continually recharges rivers through seepage.The water in the apple eaten yesterday may have fallen as rain half-way around the world last year or could have been used 100 million years ago by Dinosaur to give her baby a bath!
Groundwateris a critical source of domestic water and industrial water. Because it is part of the limited budget of fresh (non-saline) water.
It can be viewed as a Non-renewable resource:
It is possible to withdraw it faster
than nature replenishes it through
Pumping of groundwater by the world’s farmers exceeds natural replenishment by at least 160 billion cubic metres a year.
Agriculture is responsible for most of the depletion of groundwater, along with up to 70 per cent of the pollution. Both are accelerating.
Replenishment of Groundwater is too slow and our activities can create an imbalance in the hydrologic equation and can affect the quantity and quality of natural water resources available to current and future generations
This is becoming evident
during the recent
It’s a jeopardizing situation. What would happen
If all the groundwater finish up?
In a 100-year period, a water molecule spends 98 years in
the ocean, 20 months as ice, about 2 weeks in lakes and
rivers, and less than a week in the atmosphere.
Water at very shallow depths might be just a few hours old; at moderate depth, it may be 100 years old; and at great depth or after having flowed long distances from places of entry, water may be several thousands of years old. Ground water is an important part of the water cycle, and is the part of rainfall that seeps down through the soil until it reaches rock material that is saturated with water. The ground above the water table may be wet to a certain degree, but it does not stay saturated. The unsaturated zone contains air and some water and support the vegetation on the Earth. The saturated zone below the water table has water filled in the tiny pores between rock particles and the cracks of the rocks.
Now the cocern is
Mankind and animals on Earth may face a grave
Due to rapid depletion of groundwater
The earth\'s water supply remains constant, but man is capable of altering the cycle of that fixed supply. Population increases, rising living standards, and industrial and economic growth have place greater demands on our natural environment. Our activities can create an imbalance in the hydrologic equation and can affect the quantity and quality of natural water resources available to current and future generations.
Groundwater is scarce. Supply is limited.
Earth is overpopulating
Over-pumping of groundwater
due to overpopulation
- Groundwater exhausted places give rise to ‘Water Refugees’
- Croplands become barren when there is no more water left beneath
Groundwater supply is dependent on
- Deep aquifers are not historically rechargeable
Pollution of Groundwater
With traditional animal or human powered water lifting devices it was almost impossible historically to deplete aquifers. But with worldwide spread of powerful diesel and electric pumps during the last half century, overpumping has become a commonplace
Industrial progress has the
price to pay!
Earth cannot progress blindly
As the world demand for water has climbed, water tables have fallen in scores of countries, including China, India, and United States, which together produce nearly half of the world’s grain. Water tables are falling throughout the northern half of China. As the water table falls, springs and rivers go dry, lakes disappear, and wells dry up. Northern China is literally drying out.
In India also as the farmers try to feed an additional 16 million people each year, nearly the population equivalent of Australia, they are pumping more and more groundwater. This is dropping water tables in states that together contain a majority of India’s 1 billion people.
Water trapped under ground above an impermeable material
Where the rock is filled
A researcher from IIT-Delhi claims that India had breached it water security level way back in 1997-98 by overexploiting the water resource
The latest data indicates that under Punjab and Haryana, water tables are falling by up to a meter per year.
The data for monitored wells in northern Gujarat suggest that the water table has fallen from a depth of 15 meters to 400 meters over the last 3 decades. At this point, the harvests of wheat and rice, India’s principal food grains, are still increasing. But within next few years, the loss of irrigation water could override technological progress and start shrinking the harvest, as it is already doing in China.
Groundwater can become polluted, or contaminated. It can become polluted from leaky underground tanksthat store petroleum products, leaky landfills, or when people apply too much fertilizer or pesticides on their fields or lawns. When pollutants leak, spill, or are carelessly dumped on the ground they can move through the soil.
Because it is deep in the ground, groundwater pollution is generally difficult and expensive to clean up. Sometimes people have to find new places to dig a well because their own became contaminated
When pollutants enter the ground, they spread out in the groundwater.
If there is no movement of the groundwater, they disperse evenly in all directions.
Sunita Narain of the Centre for Science and Environment in India argues convincingly that a water-based disposal system with sewage treatment facilities is neither environmentally nor economically viable for India. An Indian family of 5, producing 250 litres of exrement in a year and using a water toilet, requires 150,000 litres of water to wash away the wastes.
As currently designed, India’s sewer system is actually a pathogen-dispersal system. It takes a small quantity of contaminated material and use it to make vast quantities of groundwater unfit for human use, often simply discharging it into nearby rivers or streams
One consequence of overpumping in coastal regions is the encroachment of saline seawater into fresh aquifers.
To combat this, many coastal communities re-inject wastewater into coastal aquifers.
Saline water near coastal region
It takes 1000 tons of water to grow 1 ton of wheat, it takes only 14 tons to make 1 ton of steel.
As per Geological Environmental Monitoring Institute (GEMI) in Beijing, reported that under Hebei Province in the heart of North China Plain, the average level of the deep aquifer dropped 2.9 meters [nearly 10 feet] in 2000. Deep wells [ drilled ] around Beijing now have to reach 1,000 meters to tap fresh water, adding dramatically to the cost of supply.
its supply in 2025
More than one billion people on earth already lack access to fresh drinking water. If current trend persists, by 2025, the demand for freshwater is expected to rise to 56%, exceeding the amount that is currently available.
[ Earth’s population would be 1200 crore in 2050 ]
will reduce freshwater
availability per person
By 2000, available freshwater per person dropped to 7,800 cubic metres from 9,000 cubic metres in 1989, and is
expected to plummet to 5,100cubic metres per person by 2025, when the global population is projected to reach 8 billion.
54% to 70% In 2025
The world’s six billion people are already using about 54% of all the accessible freshwater contained in rivers, lakes and undergroundaquifers. By 2025 the human’s share will be 70%, based on the population increase.
NOT TOO LONG TOO FINISH IT UP ENTIRELY !
If per capita consumption of water resources continues to rise at its current rate, humankind could be using over 90% of all available freshwater within 25 years.
By 2025, according to projections, more than 2.8 billion people in 48 countries will be facing water stress or scarcity.
40% of the Global Populationwould be water starved
By 2050, the number of water short countries soars to 54, affecting 4 billion people, or 40% of the projected global population. The worst hit areas are in the Middle East, North Africa and in sub-Saharan Africa.
Every year the water turnover on Earth involves 577,000 km3
of water. It is the water that evaporates from the oceanic surface
(502,800 km3) and from land (74,200 km3). The same water
amount falls as atmospheric precipitation (on the ocean 458,000
km3 and on land 119,000 km3). The difference between
precipitation and evaporation from land surface (119,000 -
74,200 = 44,800 km3/year) represents the total runoff of Earth’s
rivers (42,600 km3/year), and a direct groundwater runoff to
the ocean (2200 km3/year). Base flow for major rivers such as
the Mississippi, Niger, and Yangtze comes from groundwater
If all the water vapours in the atmosphere fall to the ground
as PRECIPITATION at once, the Earth would
be covered with only about 2.54 cms of water!
Stabilizing world population
Raising land productivity
Raising water storage capacity
Realistic Pricing of water to discourage wastage and
encourage efficient water use
To decide judiciously on ‘Surface water’ and ‘groundwater’ usage
In India44 million hectares irrigated by SURFACE WATER and 42
Millions hectares irrigated by GROUNDWATER.
Reducing seepage from irrigation canals
Using of low-pressure close to surface sprinklers
Employing ‘drip irrigation’ where water is supplied directly to root
zone of plants and thereby reducing water usage
Rainwater harvesting at local level
Managing waste without discharging it into local environment and
Allowing water to be recycled indefinitely
Use of waterless composting toilet
Just on way to our office, we can see the construction of a new concrete Canal which would probably replace the old canal where water meant for irrigation gets seeped down. The concrete canal would prevent that wastage.
Rainwater harvesting is the gathering, or accumulating and storing, of rainwater.
Traditionally, rainwater harvesting has been practiced in arid and semi-arid areas, and has provided drinking water, domestic water, water for livestock, water for small irrigation and a way to replenish ground water levels.
Arvari river is a small river in Rajasthan. It flows through the Alwar District of Rajasthan.
Due to Water harvesting methods, the river has become a perennial river from seasonal one
Rajendra Singh is a well known water conservationist from Alwar, Rajasthan in India. He won the Ramon Magsaysay Award for community leadership in 2001 for his pioneering work in water management. He is the founder of an NGO called Tarun Bharat Sangh. The NGO has been instrumental in fighting the slow bureaucracy and has helped villagers take charge of water management in their area, through the use of check dams and other time-tested as well as path-breaking techniques. This NGO played a vital role in reviving Arvari River
If all the world’s water were fit into a gallon jug, the fresh water available for us to use would equal only about one
In a five-minute shower we use 95 to 190 litres of water.
To brush our teeth we use 7.5 litres of water.
In the future wars in the Middle East will
more likely be fought
Over waterthan over oil ! !
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