DRP News Bulletin

DRP NB 14 June 2021: IPCC-IPBES Scientists: Biodiversity protection & climate change action HAVE TO work together

In a remarkable new report, the 50 top scientists of Inter-Governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) have come together to deliver the first ever joint collaboration report with the message that Biodiversity crisis and climate change crisis are not independent of each other. The message from scientists is clear: The claimed Climate “solutions” that hurt biodiversity or their habitat are false solutions.

By protecting and restoring nature, the report said, we can safeguard biodiversity, help limit warming, improve human well being and even find protection from the consequences of climate change, like intensified flooding and storms.

https://www.ipbes.net/events/launch-ipbes-ipcc-co-sponsored-workshop-report-biodiversity-and-climate-change

CLIMATE CHANGE

In December 2020, 50 of the world’s leading biodiversity and climate experts, selected by a 12-person Scientific Steering Committee assembled by IPBES and IPCC, participated in a four-day virtual workshop to examine the synergies and trade-offs between biodiversity protection and climate change mitigation and adaptation. This represents the first-ever collaboration between the two intergovernmental science-policy bodies. The IPBES-IPCC co-sponsored workshop report on biodiversity and climate change was launched on 10 June 2021 at a virtual media conference & Media Release.

Participants also produced an associated Scientific Outcome, consisting of seven scientific sections, a list of about 1,500 literature references, a glossary and appendices, which is also posted below.

KEY POINTS OF THE MEDIA RELEASE:

  • Biodiversity loss and climate change are both driven by human economic activities and mutually reinforce each other. Neither will be successfully resolved unless both are tackled together.
  • Addressing the synergies between mitigating biodiversity loss and climate change, while considering their social impacts, offers the opportunity to maximize benefits and meet global development goals.
  • Among the priority actions the report identifies include: Stopping the loss and degradation of carbon- and species-rich ecosystems on land and in the ocean, especially forests, wetlands, peatlands, grasslands and savannahs; coastal ecosystems such as mangroves, salt marshes, kelp forests and seagrass meadows; as well as deep water and polar blue carbon habitats; Restoring Species and Carbon Rich ecosystems.
  • Among the harmful climate actions identified by the report include: Increasing dam building, which leads to water conflicts, and longterm soil degradation from salinization.
  • It also mentions “building dams and sea walls… can have large negative environmental and social impacts”.

The Full Workshop report is available here: https://www.ipbes.net/sites/default/files/2021-06/20210609_workshop_report_embargo_3pm_CEST_10_june_0.pdf

For the Scientific Output of the Workshop see: https://www.ipbes.net/sites/default/files/2021-06/2021_IPCC-IPBES_scientific_outcome_20210612.pdf

Response to Climate Change Is Missing Something Big: Scientists Climate change and biodiversity collapse have traditionally been treated as two separate crises. According to scientists on two leading research panels, that’s the wrong way to look at things. A new report says we can’t effectively address either problem without looking at the state of nature as a whole. Here’s what to know.

How we got here:- The lead culprits in the biodiversity crisis: habitat loss because of agriculture, and, at sea, overfishing. For climate change, it’s the burning of fossil fuels.

What’s not working:- Businesses and countries have increasingly looked to nature as a way to offset their emissions, for example, by planting trees to absorb carbon. But the science is clear: Nature can’t store enough carbon to let us keep on spewing greenhouse gases at our current rates.

The solutions:- By protecting and restoring nature, the report said, we can safeguard biodiversity, help limit warming, improve human well-being and even find protection from the consequences of climate change, like intensified flooding and storms.

In Brazil, parts of the Cerrado, a biodiverse savanna that stores large amounts of carbon, have been planted with monocultures of eucalyptus and pine in an attempt to meet a global reforestation goal. The result, researchers have written separately, is a disaster that destroys the native ecosystem and the livelihoods of local communities, including Indigenous people. https://www.nytimes.com/2021/06/10/climate/biodiversity-collapse-climate-change.html  (10 June 2021)

India may have lost 3% of its GDP due to global warming Titled The Costs of Climate Change in India, the report states that India is already experiencing the consequences of 1 degree C of global warming.  https://www.hindustantimes.com/business/india-may-have-lost-3-of-its-gdp-due-to-global-warming-101623097300338.html  (08 June 2021)

HYDRO POWER PROJECTS

Uttarakhand Cause, scope determined for Chamoli disaster A self-organized coalition of 53 scientists came together in the days following the Chamoli disaster on Feb 7, 2021 to investigate the cause, scope and impacts. The team determined that the flood was caused by falling rock and glacier ice that melted on its descent — not by a lake or diverted river — which will help researchers and policymakers better identify emerging hazards in the region.

The study, which used satellite imagery, seismic records and eyewitness videos to produce computer models of the flow, was published June 10 in Science (https://science.sciencemag.org/content/early/2021/06/09/science.abh4455).

ABSTRACT OF THE SCIENCE PAPER: On 7 Feb 2021, a catastrophic mass flow descended the Ronti Gad, Rishiganga, and Dhauliganga valleys in Chamoli, Uttarakhand, India, causing widespread devastation and severely damaging two hydropower projects. Over 200 people were killed or are missing. Our analysis of satellite imagery, seismic records, numerical model results, and eyewitness videos reveals that ~27×106 m3 of rock and glacier ice collapsed from the steep north face of Ronti Peak. The rock and ice avalanche rapidly transformed into an extraordinarily large and mobile debris flow that transported boulders >20 m in diameter, and scoured the valley walls up to 220 m above the valley floor. The intersection of the hazard cascade with downvalley infrastructure resulted in a disaster, which highlights key questions about adequate monitoring and sustainable development in the Himalaya as well as other remote, high-mountain environments. https://www.washington.edu/news/2021/06/10/cause-scope-determined-for-deadly-winter-debris-flow-in-uttarakhand-india/  (10 June 2021)

– But one of the primary drivers of the disaster, the paper said, was “the unfortunate location of multiple hydropower plants in the direct path of the flow.” Co-author Dr Mohd Farooq Azam from IIT-Indore told TOI, “The greater magnitude of the latest Chamoli disaster is an argument in favour of avoiding further developments in the fragile mountains of the Himalaya.” The paper concluded, “The disaster tragically revealed the risks associated with the rapid expansion of hydropower infrastructure into increasingly unstable territory.” https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/uttarakhands-chamoli-disaster-was-caused-by-massive-rock-and-ice-avalanche-study/articleshow/83431673.cms  (11 June 2021)

“The disaster indicates that the long-term sustainability of planned hydroelectric power projects must account for both current and future social and environmental conditions while mitigating risks to infrastructure, personnel, and downstream communities,” said the study based on research led by the geoscience department of the University of Calgary (Canada).

Researchers noted that a majority of the casualties, 190 out of 204, were workers of the two plants who had little to no warning.

Reseachers also warned of more such disasters in sensitive areas such as the Himalayas as the impact of global warming is increasingly felt. “The Chamoli event may be seen in the context of a change in geomorphological sensitivity and might therefore be seen as a precursor for an increase in such events as climate warming proceeds,” the paper said. https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/chamoli-disaster-study-flags-unfortunate-location-of-power-projects-climate-crisis-101623439048152.html  (12 June 2021)

HC notifies Centre, state on PIL seeking stay on HEPs with no safety nets With a climate change activist demanding a stay on power projects in the Himalayan region that do not have safety mechanisms in place and pose a danger to communities in the vicinity, the Uttarakhand high court has issued notices to the Centre and the state to respond to the PIL, filed in the aftermath of the Chamoli-Uttarakhand flash floods in Feb 2021, and asked if interim relief had been paid to the families of over 130 who went missing and those whose houses were washed away in the floods. The bench of Chief Justice RS Chauhan and Justice Alok Kumar Verma has listed the case by the activist P C Tewari for further hearing on June 30, when the Centre and the state must file their reports. https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/dehradun/ukhand-hc-notifies-centre-state-on-pil-seeking-stay-on-himalayan-power-projects-with-no-safety-nets/articleshow/83331742.cms  (08 June 2021) https://www.livelaw.in/news-updates/uttarakhand-high-court-chamoli-disaster-compensation-175324  (07 June 2021)

The May 29 video report reveals leakages in Maneri Bhali Ph-II HEP tunnel creating panic among locals who fear a landslide threats in the area. The tunnel leakage occurred near Murgaon village on May 27 impacting farmlands and crops. Assuring plugging leakages within a week UJVNL official says there has a similar incident in 2007. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nbUf3Kh79nk  (29 May 2021)

उत्तराखंड जल विद्युत नियम की ओर से बनाई गई  304 मेगावाट की मनेरी भाली परियोजना  फेस 2 में  उत्तरकाशी जोशियाड़ा बैराज से धरासू पावर हाऊस तक बनी  सुरंग के बीच मे मरगांव के पास गुरुवार (May 27) को सुबह दस बजे अचानक  लीकेज हो गया और भारी मात्रा में पानी बाहर बहने लगा। देखते ही देखते पानी बढ़ता गया। इससे आसपास के खेतों में नुकसान के साथ ही दरारे आने लग गई।  जिससे मरगांव के ग्रामीण दहसत में आ गये। https://www.livehindustan.com/uttarakhand/story-chamoli-jaise-aapda-ka-uttarkashi-mein-khatra-maneri-bhali-hydro-power-project-phase-two-tunnel-leak-dharasu-power-project-uttarkashi-4069028.html  (28 May 2021)

Review Glaciohydrology of Himalaya-Karakoram Abstract:- This review demonstrates that glacier and snow melt are important components of (Himalaya-Karakoram) HK rivers, with greater hydrological importance for the Indus than Ganges and Brahmaputra basins. Total river runoff, glacier melt, and seasonality of flow are projected to increase until the 2050s, with some exceptions and large uncertainties. Critical knowledge gaps severely affect modeled contributions of different runoff components, future runoff volumes and seasonality. Therefore, comprehensive field- and remote sensing-based methods and models are needed. https://science.sciencemag.org/content/early/2021/06/09/science.abf3668  (09 June 2021)

Himachal Pradesh Kinnaur HEP: A setback for natural resources, culture The strongest opposition from the community is coming because of the negligence of the constitutional laid process to build such a project. A pre-environmental clearance and no objection certificate are mandatory for any such project from all concerned Gram Panchayats. The project lies in the Scheduled Areas and tenders the Provisions of the Panchayats Act, 1996, and hence makes the applicability of any provision more enforceable.

“It is mandatory for the company to take NoC from all GPs concerned to commence any such project in the tribal areas. We have been seeing a repetitive and deliberate ignoring of these provisions by hydropower companies for the last 15 years. They start the work in the name of exploration or observation and then go further without adhering to the laid rules,” said Shanta Negi, a member of district panchayat.

The same happened in JTP HEP, as on April 4, the company came with all machinery for starting the tunnelling process and was forced to stop only after a massive agitation by the villagers, she added. The CAGs report on Environmental Clearance and Post Clearance Monitoring revealed that 32% of projects have procedural violations in following the norms for EIA studies and the non-compliance was maximum in the case of the river valley and HEPs. https://www.downtoearth.org.in/news/environment/kinnaur-hydroelectric-project-a-setback-for-himachal-s-natural-resources-culture-77325  (07 June 2021)

Bihar Govt approves 130 MW HEP over Kosi The Cabinet has given a go-ahead to the Dagmara Multipurpose Hydroelectirc Project over the Kosi river in Supaul district. The 130 MW hydro project is about 31 km downstream from the Kosi Barrage and will be constructed by the NHPC. The project worth Rs 2478.24 crore, envisages the construction of the concrete barrage, earth dam and a powerhouse with a length of 945 meters, 5750 meters and 283.20 meters respectively. The detailed project report, after obtaining all clearances from various authorities, has been submitted to the Central Electricity Authority for technical approval.   https://www.newindianexpress.com/nation/2021/jun/03/bihar-govt-approves-130-mw-hydroelectric-projectover-kosi-river-all-set-to-start-work-soon-2311166.html  (03 June 2021)

MoEF Agenda of EAC on River Valley Projects meeting on June 16, 2021.

1. 260 MW Dulhasti-II HEP in an area of 390 ha by NHPC Ltd. in village Dul, Dist Kishtwar, Jammu & Kashmir – Terms of Reference

2. Enhancement of Capacity of Karcham Wangtoo HEP from 1000 to 1091 MW at Village Karcham, Tehsil Nichar, Dist Kinnaur, (Himachal Pradesh) by JSW Hydro Energy Ltd- Reconsideration for Amendment in Environmental Clearance

3. Applicability of EIA Notification, 2006 for Pumped Storage Projects- reg

4. Directions by the NGT, Principal Bench, Delhi vide order dated 28.10.2020 in the Original Application No. 190/2020 titled Noble M Paikada Vs Union of India & Others pertain to the notification S.O. 1224 (E) dated 28.03.2020

5. Representation by Dr. Bharat Jhunjhunwala in pursuance of the order passed by High Court of Uttarakhand on 24.02.2021 under W.P. (PIL) No. 177/2020 regarding Singoli Bhatwari Project (99MW) in Uttarakhand http://environmentclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/Form-1A/Agenda/0806202171111654FinalAgendaRiverValley13thEAC.pdf 

NHPC sails through Q4 but concerns over costs remain Some real aspects behind the window dressing of NHPC balance sheet for the last quarter of 2021: Lower power generation, high time and cost over runs, below market performance of the script and high capital outflows of future. https://www.livemint.com/market/mark-to-market/nhpc-sails-through-q4fy21-thanks-to-higher-other-income-11623387558030.html   (13 June 2021)

IAH Hydropower status 2021 Mostly IHA propaganda, but shows the slowing progress of hydropower projects globally, except in some autocracies like China. https://www.waterpowermagazine.com/news/newsiha-publishes-2021-hydropower-status-report-8813870  (11 June 2021)

Eugene Simonov says: it shows that hydro makes about 0.00? percent among projects planned, and that pumped storage is below 2% our of storage projects envisioned, etc. If this is true – our sincere condolences to the National Hydropower Association. https://eta-publications.lbl.gov/sites/default/files/queued_up_may_2021.pdf 

DAMS

Polavaram Project Water to reach Godavari Delta Water release through the Polavaram Project spillway was initiated on June 11, 2021. By removing the ring bund, the Godavari River diverted to spillway through the approach channel. The crucial spillway can regulate 50 lakh cusecs of flood and releases to the downstream. It is larger than the Three Gorges Dam, which can regulate only 47 lakh cusecs.

– The most volatile river Godavari’s diversion for 6.6 kilometres has completed. The second largest river in the country experiences floods ranging from 35 lakh to 50 lakh cusecs. Diversion of these massive floods for 6.6 kilometres is not an easy task. It is an engineering marvel on any parameter. The Godavari River’s natural flow, diverting to the right side, will continue even after completing the project.

– So far, 76.29 per cent of project headworks was completed. Many villages, including Polavaram, are at risk of flooding as water diversion takes place through an approach channel. Up to one lakh cusecs of floods in the spillway will not have any adverse effect.  However, flood above 12 lakh cusecs will have an impact. Flood at a minimum level will affect nine habitations. As the flood increase to 28 meters high, the flood-prone habitations will increase. If the flood reaches the spillway level (45.72meters), about 235 habitations will be flooded. Accordingly, the government is preparing a plan and rehabilitating the villages.

– This is more fictional than factual: “The submerged villages were evacuated and provided rehabilitation.” https://www.prnewswire.com/in/news-releases/first-fruits-of-polavaram-project-to-reach-godavari-delta-830077541.html  (11 June 2021)

Sudhakar Reddy stated that the project authorities have not conducted back water studies properly and completely ignored in the adverse of the historical Sri Sita Ramachandra Swamy temple at Bhadrachalam and town besides about 100 villages in Singareni Collieries, Dummagudem project, Manuguru Heavy Water Treatment plant in the State. He said, “I am not opposing construction of Polavaram irrigation project in Andhra Pradesh, but there is need to be proper back water studies and adverse impact on the upstream State must be avoided.” https://www.thehansindia.com/news/cities/khammam/ponguleti-sudhakar-reddy-asks-modi-to-solve-polavaram-project-backwaters-issue-689545  (06 June 2021)

Gujarat Article (in Gujarati) on BBC website on the controversial Kalpsar Project. Quotes SANDRP coordinator extensively. https://www.bbc.com/gujarati/india-57431752  (10 June 2021)

Sardar Sarovar Dam This report is very subjective, pro dam report, just narrating the statements of officials as gospel truths. Not even mentioning that many of these claims are not true or misleading. However, this year, in the ongoing summer, the dam released about 1.3 Million Acre Feet (MAF) water for irrigation between April 1 and May 31 in its command area of 21.29 lakh ha. 35 dams and reservoirs, close to 1,200 check dams and 1000 village tanks have been filled with Narmada water this year, according to the Sardar Sarovar Narmada Nigam Ltd (SSNNL). https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/explained-how-sardar-sarovar-dam-is-providing-irrigation-water-in-summer-for-the-first-time-in-history-7350969/  (09 June 2021)

Repair work at Dharoi dam postponed The repair work scheduled at Dharoi dam in Mehsana district from midnight of Wednesday till Friday (June 9-11) was postponed, said Sandeep Patel, deputy engineer at Dharoi dam. He did not disclose the reasons for postponement of the repair work. Had this work commenced, drinking water supply to 362 villages and 176 hamlets in nine municipalities would have been affected. Talukas like Kheralu, Vadnagar, Visnagar and Unjha falling under Mehsana district, Siddhpur in Patan and Palanpur, Ambaji, Danta and Kanodar in Banaskantha would have faced water shortage for at least three days as the water supply would have been discontinued. https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/rajkot/repair-work-at-dharoi-dam-postponed/articleshow/83378855.cms  (10 June 2021)

Tamil Nadu New check dam upstream Poondi reservoir The Water Resources Department (WRD) is preparing estimates to construct another check dam across the Nagari river at Gulur, near Tiruttani, as a measure to save floodwater. This will be the fourth check dam to be built across the river. Officials of the WRD said work was under way to build a check dam at Illupur, near Tiruttani, at a cost of ₹17.6 crore. The proposed check dam will come up at Gulur village, located 6 km downstream of Illupur. Both areas are located upstream of the Poondi reservoir. The project will be taken up at a cost of ₹15 crore.

Similarly, the department plans to rebuild two dilapidated storage structures across a channel that links surplus water from different waterbodies, including the Senji Panapakkam tank, to the Poondi reservoir. The check dams at Thirupachur and Kaivandur across the supply channel are brick masonry structures built around 50-60 years ago. The new ₹5 crore facility will be 60 metre in length and 1.8 metre in height, and will be able to store 6 mcft of floodwater. The two projects are estimated to cost a total of ₹10 crore. https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/water-resources-department-to-build-new-check-dam-upstream-of-the-poondi-reservoir/article34793414.ece  (12 June 2021)

Maharashtra Jayakwadi, other Marathwada dams get over 2 TMC inflows The good rainfall in catchment areas has resulted in Jayakwadi dam from Paithan taluka of Aurangabad district receiving 21 MCUM (million cubic meter) of water, whereas Vishnupuri dam from Nanded district received over 31 MCUM water. Among other major irrigation projects from the region, Yeldari dam and Lower Dudhan dam from Parbhani district have received over 5 MCUM and 3 MCUM inflows, respectively, whereas Sidhheshwar dam from Hingoli district has recorded 4 MCUM water.

As per official data, both Lower Manar major irrigation project (Osmanabad district) and Majalgaon major irrigation project (Beed district) have received the highest rainfall (100 mm) in catchment areas since June 1, followed by Yeldari dam (95mm), Lower Terna dam from Osmanabad (72mm), Jayakwadi dam (71 mm), Lower Dudhna (65mm), Vishnupuri (51mm) and Sina Kolegaon from Osmanabad (12mm).

The 11 major dams and two major barrages from Marathwada were showing improved collective storage of 69 TMC by Thursday (June 10) morning, as compared to 57 TMC storage during the same period last year. https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/aurangabad/jayakwadi-other-mwada-dams-get-over-2tmc-inflows/articleshow/83408369.cms  (11 June 2021)

INTERLINKING OF RIVERS

Madhya Pradesh Resistance against proposed diamond mine Another concern is water. The mine and ore processing plant will need around 16,050 m3/day (or 5.9 million cubic metres a year). For this, Essel proposes to divert seasonal streams towards a reservoir, although the details are not clear.

The area has sedimentary Vindhyan rock. The water table is very low, and the deepest tubewells in the area already yield only 20-50 m3 of water per day. The Central Groundwater Authority has classified Buxwaha a semi-critical area in terms of water availability. https://science.thewire.in/environment/buxwaha-forest-bunder-diamond-mine-suspicion-resistance/  (09 June 2021)

Tamil Nadu ₹872.45 cr river linking project to be completed soon The linking of Tamirabharani – Karumeniyar – Nambiyar, being executed on an outlay of ₹872.45 crore to take the surplus waters to the southern regions of Tirunelveli and Thoothukudi districts by digging a 73-km-long flood carrier channel, will be completed before the northeast monsoon, Assembly Speaker M. Appavu has said.

Though the project outlay was pegged at ₹369 crore in 2009, the delay jacked it up to ₹872.45 crore. https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Madurai/87245-crore-river-linking-project-to-be-completed-soon/article34616423.ece  (21 May 2021)

INTERSTATE WATER DISPUTES

Cauvery Water Dispute Stalin writes to Union govt to ensure release of water  Tamil Nadu CM MK Stalin on Friday (June 11) wrote to Union Minister for Jal Shakti Gajendra Singh to take steps and advise the Cauvery Water Management Authority to release water as per the Supreme Court’s judgment. According to the judgment, Tamil Nadu should receive 9.19 TMC water in June and 31.24 TMC in July. Stalin also pointed out that Tamil Nadu has decided to open the Mettur dam from June 12 assuming that Cauvery water will be released as per the schedule.

Stalin said the Kuruvai crops are dependent on the continuous release of water from the reservoir since they do not receive much from the southwest monsoon. “Hence any shortfall in release of water as per the schedule will severely impact the standing crop as well as commencing and continuing the samba cultivation, from next month,” he said. https://www.thenewsminute.com/article/tn-cm-stalin-writes-union-govt-ensure-release-cauvery-water-150538 (12 June 2021)

RIVERS AS NATIONAL WATER WAYS

Opinion Inland waterways program a tale of unkept promises Shripad Dharmadhikary, Avli Verma Now the government is making a major push for seaplanes and luxury cruises. This ignores the needs of local communities and fishers. For example, cruises have been introduced in Varanasi on NW-1 which adversely affect the traditional occupation of small boat operators on the Ganga. In Varanasi, farmers are also being forcibly displaced for land required for the World Bank-funded freight village to be developed for the Ganga Waterway.

There are some indications that with projects such as Arth Ganga and community jetties, JMVP may be tweaked to accommodate the needs of local communities. But so far, it is a small effort. It remains to be seen whether IWAI will prioritise the needs of local communities and fishers or of large corporate users.  https://www.thethirdpole.net/en/livelihoods/india-inland-waterways-programme-unkept-promises/  (07 June 2021)

URBAN RIVERS

Opinon Controlling water pollution through technology The crux of the issue lies with the capacity/quality of urban sewerage treatment plants which are unable to cope with the ever increasing sewerage load due to the population pressure in the cities. There is a logic in this argument. Most of the cities in the Ganga basin are in a catch-22 position with respect to their capacity of sewerage treatment plant. They end up discharging polluted drain water in the Ganga river since the capacity of the plant falls short of the sewerage load. This is true also for other cities lying beside other principal rivers like Yamuna, Godavari, etc. https://www.thehindubusinessline.com/opinion/controlling-water-pollution/article34763344.ece  (09 June 2021)

Mumbai 6 titles Mithi shares with Daenerys https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ucG4Cid6cY  (09 June 2021)

RIVERS

Cauvery river, Mekedatu. Inside Cauvery Wildlife Sanctuary. Photo Credit: Nirmala Gowda

SANDRP Blog My mother is the river. The river is my mother Guest Article by Nirmala Gowda This is time of immense grief and loss for me. Unable to face the harsh reality of my mother gasping for each breath in the ICU, I was drowning myself in work. Co-incidentally or so I think, I was working on a report analysing asphyxiation of Vrishabhavathi, Arkavathi and Cauvery rivers and suffocation of aquatic lifeforms the rivers supported. https://sandrp.in/2021/06/10/my-mother-is-the-river-the-river-is-my-mother/  (10 June 2021)

Floods, a boon or a bane? Jeevitnadi Living River Foundation, in this first video from Episode 1: But, why do we have floods released on 4th June 2021 from the series on ‘Everything about floods’,  demystifies floods and delves into their importance for not only maintaining the river ecosystem and health, but also for supporting communities that depend on the river and floods for their livelihoods. https://www.indiawaterportal.org/article/floods-boon-or-bane  (09 June 2021)

Himachal Pradesh Why Springs drying up This combination of high-intensity rainfall, coupled with relatively poor water percolation condition of recharge areas, therefore, translates to comparatively less water getting into aquifers, resulting in, at first, in discharge from the spring decreasing and eventually the spring drying up. Therefore, while climate change has led to the drying up of springs in the Himalayan region, anthropogenic activities have served as catalysts in the process. https://www.youthkiawaaz.com/2021/06/once-gushing-with-water-springs-in-himachal-pradesh-are-rapidly-drying-up/  (05 June 2021)

SUTLEJ “Breakdown Of System”: NGT on Ghaggar pollution The NGT has come down heavily on Punjab, Himachal and Haryana for failing to stop the discharge of untreated effluents in the Ghaggar river and said that “if the State itself fails in implementing the law, it is nothing but breakdown of the system itself”. A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel said the three states and Chandigarh continue to contribute water pollution which is a criminal offence.

“It is breach of public trust under public trust doctrine. We are left with a feeling that there is no commitment to the rule of law and no concern for the environment and health of the citizens on the part of the concerned authorities in the states of HP, Haryana, Punjab and UT Chandigarh,” said the bench, also comprising Justice Sudhir Agarwal.

The tribunal directed the Chief Secretary, Punjab and the Advisor to the Administrator, Union Territory of Chandigarh in coordination with other concerned officers to take appropriate remedial measures to comply with the mandate of law, including the directions of the Supreme Court. It also directed a joint committee of Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), Punjab PCB and pollution control committee of Chandigarh to inspect the drain and furnish a status report within two months by e-mail.

The green panel said that no action is being taken against the erring officers and it gives an impression that there is collapse of Environmental rule of law. “Who is to pay the cost of damage to the environment and public health of large number of unidentified citizens and other living creatures? Is such cost being calculated? How officers responsible for damage by their inaction or otherwise are being dealt with. Should the State be held liable vicariously for such failure and failure to punish the guilty,” the bench said.

The bench observed that the NGT has been passing repeated orders and as many as six reports have been submitted by a Monitoring Committee headed by a former High Court Judge and a former Chief Secretary, clearly recording failure of the State authorities but the higher authorities are also conveniently ignoring their responsibility. “Advocates for the authorities only maintain silence before this Tribunal. If the State itself fails in implementing the law, it is nothing but breakdown of the system itself.

Is this Tribunal to just remain silent spectator for such gross failure or hold highest authorities accountable by directing their prosecution for their criminal failure and indirectly being party to the crime against the law of the land? How the law of the land is to be meaningfully enforced. We expect answers to these questions from the States,” the bench said. https://www.ndtv.com/india-news/breakdown-of-system-national-green-tribunal-on-pollution-in-ghaggar-river-2459386  (08 June 2021)

Rajasthan 10 districts getting black water from Punjab The Indira Gandhi Canal Project (IGCP) carries serious ailments from Punjab to 10 districts of Rajasthan or a third of its population, which uses this water for both drinking and irrigation. Released on June 6 when the canal was closed for 40 days of repair, the water was almost black when it reached Ganganagar district on Monday evening. Ganganagar MP Nihal Chand Chauhan and Union Jal Shakti minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat raised concern during World Oceans Day on June 8. The volunteer organisations of the two states asked Punjab’s water resources department and pollution control board to inspect the Harike Pattan headworks in Ferozepur district. https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/chandigarh/10-raj-dists-getting-black-water-from-pb/articleshow/83351902.cms  (09 June 2021)

It’s been years that untreated water from Punjab has been flowing into the IGCP in Rajasthan, posing a threat to scores of people residing near the canal who quench their thirst with this chemical-laden water. However, this time the water in the canal has turned dark black in colour, alarming the ruling government in the desert state. The project covers an area measuring 600 km in length and 45 km in width in the north west of Rajasthan. https://www.thehansindia.com/news/national/deadlock-continues-between-raj-and-punjab-over-flow-of-contaminated-water-into-igcp-690523  (12 June 2021)

GANGA Uttarakhand Centre plans 3-km tunnel through ‘fragile’ hill town The Centre has announced its plan to build a nearly 3-km-long tunnel at a cost of Rs 700 crore to “decongest” the hill town of Mussoorie. Forest officials, scientists, and environmentalists, however, flagged concerns about what it could do to the fragile geography of the region — they say they were not consulted, a large part of the hill town is landslide-prone, and the water system across the country could be affected by the disturbance to the Mussoorie Ridge.

Scientists at WIHG told TOI any construction in and near Mussoorie must be done after a detailed Environmental Impact Assessment. “About 40% of the town is highly vulnerable to landslides,” Dr Vikram Gupta, senior scientist at WIHG, told TOI.

The project, environmentalists said, could also end up disrupting water systems. Reenu Paul, a Dehradun-based environmentalist, said, “The Mussoorie Ridge is a natural divide between the Ganga and Yamuna river systems. Touching the dolomite rocks in the ridge would cut off (or dry up) the aquifers (water-bearing rocks) and disturb the water system of the entire country.” https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/dehradun/red-flags-up-in-mussoorie-as-centre-plans-3-km-tunnel-through-fragile-hill-town/articleshow/83380074.cms  (10 June 2021)

IISc’s facility to trace metal pollution in river A multi-instrument facility harboured in Indian Institute of Science will soon identify the concentration of toxic metal pollution in the Ganga, Godavari, and Kaveri at high precision. The facility, equipped with a triple Quadrupole Mass Spectrometer model which is top in the world, can identify very tricky metals (which may even be toxic) at very low concentrations. https://www.newindianexpress.com/cities/bengaluru/2021/jun/12/iiscs-facility-to-trace-metal-pollution-in-river-ganga-2315245.html  (12 June 2021)

Uttar Pradesh Varanasi district officials form panel to look into algae infestation The Varanasi district administration has formed a committee to probe into the algal spread in Ganga, which has turned green due to the invasion. What is surprising about the panel is that there is not even one river engineering, environmental or phycology (algae related science) expert on it. This despite the fact that Varanasi is home to the premier Banaras Hindu University, whose Department of Botany and School of Biotechnology for years have pioneered phycology research globally.

Varanasi district magistrate Kaushal Raj Sharma had constituted a committee comprising five administrative, police and pollution control board officers. On Tuesday (June 8), the committee voyaged from Varanasi to Mirzapur, collecting samples of the green algae infested water. The committee has been asked by the Varanasi district magistrate to submit its report by June 10.

The algae infestation of the river’s water is not only noticeable in the ancient city, but also upstream in Mirzapur and Prayagraj districts. Meanwhile, a city-based advocate has moved the NGT over the issue. https://www.newindianexpress.com/nation/2021/jun/09/varanasi-district-officials-form-panel-to-look-into-algae-infestation-ofriver-ganga-2313492.html  (09 June 2021)

Vindhyachal STP discharge causing algal bloom According to the investigation report, the 4-MLD capacity STP is based on conventional system. It seems that the algal bloom originated from the STP at Vindhyachal. The flow of water is minimum and the temperature is also conducive for the growth of algae in the river. Besides, nutrients like nitrogen, phosphorus, urea and DAP coming from farm fields through drains significantly help growth of the algae. The untreated wastewater from Mirzapur and Chunar also contribute to the algal bloom.

The team in its report recommended modernization of Vindhyachal STP and that necessary instruction be given to the STP authorities for its proper maintenance. It was also recommended that all the STPs along the Ganga should be maintained properly and all the drains including Nagwa/Assi, Khidkiya Ghat and Samne Ghat in Varanasi should be tapped completely.

The generated sewage should be treated at Ramna STP (50MLD) and Ramnagar STP (10 MLD). The construction of a new STP in Mirzapur, maintaining flow in the river and conducting a study on the impact of algae on aquatic life by the experts of Banaras Hindu University (BHU) was also recommended. The algae first appeared around 20 days ago, which was first examined by the officials of the Pollution Control Board. https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/varanasi/vindhyachal-stp-discharge-causing-algal-bloom-in-ganga/articleshow/83468686.cms  (13 June 2021)

इसके अलावा गंगा में स्कीमर मशीन लगाने के भी सुझाव दिए गए हैं. इसको देखते हुए एनएमसीजी के माध्यम से दो स्कीमर मशीन मांगी गई हैं. ताकि हरे शैवाल को स्कीम करके गंगा से निकाल लिया जाए और वह आगे ब्रीडिंग का सोर्स न बन सके. https://www.aajtak.in/india/uttar-pradesh/story/algae-in-ganga-of-varanasi-river-changes-in-green-color-read-more-updates-1271294-2021-06-12  (12 June 2021)

Lack of NMCG funds no justification for Sai pollution: NGT  Non-availability of funds from NMCG cannot be a justification for not stopping pollution in a river, the NGT said on Thursday (June 10) while imposing a salary cut of Rs 1,000 per month on the officer concerned for failing to check pollution in Sai river which meets the Ganga.

“If compliance is ensured and affidavit filed to the satisfaction of this Tribunal before the next date (October 27), the Tribunal may consider restoring the cut and refunding the deducted amount,” the bench said. The NGT asked the Member Secretary, UPPCB to explain why action be not taken for the board’s failure in providing water quality data of the Sai, functioning of Regional River Committees and reporting the progress to the Chief Secretary. The tribunal was hearing a plea filed by UP resident T S Singh seeking prevention of discharge of untreated sewage into the Sai at Pratapgarh in Uttar Pradesh. https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/india/lack-of-nmcg-funds-no-justification-for-sai-river-pollution-says-ngt/articleshow/83403344.cms  (10 June 2021)

YAMUNA Haryana Work on checking waste discharge in Yamuna, Ghaggar unchecked River Rejuvenation Committee (RRC) during its latest monthly meeting found that out of 100.5 MLD being discharged into the Yamuna catchment area from 155 locations, authorities were able to divert only 48.15 MLD from 90 locations. Besides, work is yet to be started at around 18 locations.

Similarly, in the Ghaggar catchment area, out of the total 42.25 MLD being discharged from 56 locations, only 21.08 MLD from 28 locations has been diverted so far and work has not been started at 14 locations.

Moreover, out of the 145 MLD to be diverted from Leg-I, Leg-II and Leg-III of the Najafgarh drain or Badshahpur drain in Gurugram, only 104 MLD has been diverted so far. It was also observed that out of the 126 sources of pollution identified along Yamuna, the action plan for 34 locations is pending. Along the Ghaggar, 69 out of the total 255 identified locations are yet to start taking corrective measures.

The committee also took cognisance of the slow progress on laying of sewerage network at Ambala City, Ambala Sadar, Kaithal, Jakhal Mandi, Hisar, Jagadhari-Yamuna Nagar, Palwal, Rohtak, Faridabad, Karnal and Bahadurgarh. It was decided that the industries department will take a survey on shifting industries from several cities of Yamunanagar, Panipat, Sonepat, Rohtak and Faridabad.

It is pertinent to mention here that HSPCB had found groundwater at 38 out of 78 locations in Ghaggar catchment area was unfit while in Yamuna catchment areas, 10 out of 50 locations were not complying to the norms. https://www.hindustantimes.com/cities/others/work-on-checking-waste-discharge-into-yamuna-ghaggar-still-unchecked-101623008251340.html  (07 June 2021)

सिसकी यमुना, मेरी गोद में भरो जहर यमुना नदी के आंचल में बहने वाला पानी इस कदर जहरीला हो चुका है कि जीवों का भी उसमें बसर नहीं रहा। यही नहीं प्रतिबंध के बाद भी धड़ल्ले से फैक्ट्रियों का जहरीला पानी यमुना की गोद में समा रहा है। इसके कारण आसपास के गांवों के लोग भी बीमार हो रहे हैं। इस मामले में अब ग्रामीण बीस गांवों की पंचायत कर प्रस्ताव पास करेंगे और स्वास्थ्य मंत्री अनिल विज से समस्या के समाधान की गुहार भी लगाएंगे। https://www.jagran.com/haryana/panipat-despite-the-ban-dirty-water-containing-chemicals-from-factories-is-being-poured-into-drain-number-two-anger-among-people-21727044.html  (11 June 2021)

Delhi DDA Master Plan: Emphasis on increasing interaction with Yamuna, green zones The draft lays down a clear boundary of the buffer zone near the river and how to develop it. “A 300 m wide green buffer wherever feasible shall be maintained along the entire edge of the river. Wild grassing or other suitable ground-cover vegetation shall be planted for 25-30 m from the river edge, and trees may be planted beyond this grass belt,” it states.

While cleaning the river and reviving dying water bodies forms one of the key parts of the draft plan, DDA is looking to create green mobility corridors for use as pedestrian walkways and cycle tracks along stormwater drains in the city.

The draft, however, makes it clear that public access will not be allowed in ecologically significant or sensitive features or areas such as rocky outcrops, water bodies and nesting areas. The plan also says that sites such as closed landfills, ash dykes in closed thermal power plants, abandoned quarries and mines which have issues of toxicity and unstable nature of soil can be converted into biodiversity parks, eco-parks and water bodies. https://indianexpress.com/article/cities/delhi/dda-master-plan-emphasis-on-increasing-interaction-with-yamuna-green-zones-7351612/  (10 June 2021)  

Algae in Yamuna Due to high growth of algae in the Yamuna river, water supply in some parts of the city would be affected Saturday (June 12) onwards and will be available on low pressure until the situation improves, the Delhi Jal Board (DJB) said in a statement on Saturday. Low water levels and a high ammonia content in the river have often hit supply in the city, and caused tussles with the neighbouring state of Haryana. The DJB had twice released similar statements in April – on April 30 and April 24 – blaming Haryana. Experts have said maintaining a certain flow in the river is essential for its rejuvenation. https://indianexpress.com/article/cities/delhi/algae-in-yamuna-water-supply-in-delhi-to-be-affected-7356097/  (13 June 2021)

Uttar Pradesh Efforts on to ensure uninterrupted flow of Yamuna: minister The government is making concerted efforts to ensure uninterrupted flow of the Yamuna with focus on its cleanliness, said state Jal Shakti minister Dr Mahendra Singh on Friday (June 11). To a question on the construction of an illegal colony in a flood-prone area in Vrindavan, the minister said stern action will be taken if such a complaint is received. https://www.outlookindia.com/newsscroll/efforts-on-to-ensure-uninterrupted-flow-of-yamuna-up-minister/2100463  (11 June 2021)

नागदेव नदी बेसिन को विकसित कर किया जाएगा संरक्षण कभी 132 गांव की प्यास बुझाने वाली सहारनपुर की नागदेव नदी अपनी पहचान खो चुकी है। आधुनिकता की होड में नदी को बचाने का आज तक कोई प्रयास नहीं हुआ। जिसका असर यह हुआ कि नदी की जलधारा विलुप्त हो चुकी है और नदी का जलागम क्षेत्र भी सिमट गया है। नदी की जीवनदान देने के लिए अब एक नए सिरे से प्रयास शुरू हुए हैं। जल शक्ति अभियान के तहत नागदेव नदी में चैकडैप बनाए जाएंगे। जिससे नदी के जल को संरक्षित किया जा सके। साथ ही नदी बेसिन को विकसित किया जा सके।

यमुना, हिंडन और ढमोला नदी के साथ ही नागदेव नदी भी सहारनपुर की प्रमुख नदी मानी जाती है। शिवालिक रैंज से कई स्त्राेत कोठडी बहलोलपुर गांव में आकर एक साथ मिलते हैं। यहीं नागदेव नदी का उद्गम स्थल माना जाता है। जिसके बाद नागदेव नदी अपनी यात्रा शुरू करती है। सहारनपुर जिले के करीब 132 राजस्व गांव से होकर अपनी यात्रा पूरी करती हुई यह नदी घौघरेकी गांव के पास हिंडन नदी में मिल जाती है। उद्गम स्थल से लेकर संगम तक नागदेव नदी करीब 42 किमी की यात्रा करती है। जबकि नदी का जलागम क्षेत्र करीब 176 वर्ग किमी है। https://www.livehindustan.com/uttar-pradesh/saharanpur/story-conservation-will-be-done-by-developing-nagdev-river-basin-4108417.html  (10 June 2021)

STPs no longer polluting Hindon: UPPCB  Nearly 6 months after the National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) held 14 sewage treatment plants (STP) in Gautam Budh Nagar and Ghaziabad responsible for releasing untreated effluents into the Hindon river, the regional offices of the Uttar Pradesh Pollution Control Board (UPPCB) in both the neighbouring districts have given them a clean chit.

Despite the UPPCB clean chit to the STPs, the local environmentalists have claimed that the effluent discharge into Hindon has not stopped altogether. “There are multiple outlets and canals which continue to release untreated water into the Hindon. Even if the UPPCB claims that all the STPs are functioning at full capacity, no one can deny that substantial amount of effluents continue to get released into the river and the NMCG should from time to time carry out their ground survey,” Greater Noida-based environmentalist Vikrant Tongad said. https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/noida/stps-no-longer-polluting-hindon-river-uppcb/articleshow/82812199.cms  (21 May 2021)

FISH, FISHERIES, FISHERFOLKS

Gujarat Dumping Jetpur’s effluents in deep sea worries fishermen The fishing community along the Saurahstra coast and environment activists have expressed concern over the state government’s plan to dump the effluent from industries in Jetpur, Rajkot into deep sea near Porbandar. The government has proposed a Rs 700 crore pipeline project to transport treated water from the common effluent treatment plants (CETP) in Jetpur to Porbandar. The fishing community has raised concern over the impact of the project on future of fishing industry that thrives on exports to Europe and US. They apprehend that dumping of effluent into deep sea will not only adversely impact the fish population but also contaminate the marine organisms.

– Shree Akhil Gujarat Macchimar Mahamandal (AGMM), representing the fishing community in the state, on Monday, wrote to chief minister Vijay Rupani demanding suspension of the effluent pipeline project. “The fishermen community is already in financial distress due to Covid-induced lockdown worldwide and the recent cyclones that ravaged the fishing villages. Several factories having units on the coast are already polluting the sea. Many species of fish are already on the verge of extinction. If Jeptur’s polluted water is discharged into the sea, it will ruin the future fishing prospects.” https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/rajkot/dumping-jetpurs-effluents-in-deep-sea-worries-fishermen/articleshow/83349166.cms  (09 June 2021)

Uttar Pradesh Fish trade hit after COVID bodies dumped in river The fish business in Prayagraj, Lucknow and Kanpur have been severely hit after COVID bodies were found floating in rivers last month. “We resumed business two days ago when the Corona curfew was lifted but people are just not coming forward to buy fish. Even our regular customers have stopped buying fish. When we made inquiries, they said that they were wary of eating fish that may have been infected due to the bodies floating in the rivers,” said Prashant Kumar, a fish seller in the Narhi market in Lucknow. Rabindra Ghosh, a retired government employee in Prayagraj and a regular fish consumer, admitted that he had not purchased fish since the past one and a half months when bodies were found floating in the water. “My wife and I have decided not to eat fish for the next few months. https://www.sentinelassam.com/business/fish-trade-hit-after-covid-bodies-dumped-in-river-542445  (12 June 2021)

बाँदा: छाबी तालाब में मर गई सैकड़ों मछली बाँदा शहर में स्थित छाबी तालाब पर आज एक सैकड़ा से अधिक मरी मछली सामने आई हैं। मिली जानकारी मुताबिक तालाब में सीवरेज पानी व बारिश के जल में प्रदूषण के संक्रमण होने से ऐसा हुआ है। स्थानीय बाशिंदों में कुछ सूत्रधा र नाम नहीं लिखने की शर्त पर कहते है यह तालाब तो अब अवैध कब्जा का अड्डा हैं। हर पांच साल में नगरपालिका तालाब संरक्षण का झुनझुना बजाकर बजट हजम करती हैं।

वहीं शहर के तालाब पुरुषों ने कभी इन तालाबो की सुध नही ली हैं। राजस्व के ठेकेदारों ने लेखपाल के जरिये बाँदा के ज्यादातर तालाब बेच लिए या भूमाफिया को सौंपकर सौं लोगों को बिकवा दिए है। गौरतलब हैं ता लाबों को लेकर सुप्रीम कोर्ट से पारित आदेश हिंचलाल तिवारी बनाम कमलादेवी व अन्य सहित अन्य तमाम हाईकोर्ट के आदेशों को ज़िले के एसडीएम व डी एम ने बौना कर दिया है। http://www.voiceofbundelkhand.in/uncategorized/banda-hundreds-of-fish-died-in-chhabi-pond-pond-has-become-a-haven-for-illegal-occupation/#comment-26  (02 June 2021)

SAND MINING

Haryana 3 drown in Yamuna 3 teenagers drowned in the Yamuna river near Dhikka Tapri village in Haryana’s Yamunanagar district on Thursday (June 10). The deceased boys have been identified as Happy (14) of Naharpur village, his cousins Rahul (17) of Saran village and Vishesh Kumar (15) of Barheri village.

As per the information, Rahul and Vishesh had come to Happy’s house in Naharpur village a few days ago. “Happy, his elder brother Vijay, Rahul and Vishesh had left the house at about 1pm saying that they were going out to play, but they went towards the Yamuna river. Vijay remained on the bank of the river, but Happy, Rahul and Vishesh went into the river to take a bath. Soon, they drowned in the water. https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/gurgaon/haryana-three-boys-drown-in-yamuna-river/articleshow/83433932.cms  (11 June 2021)

राहगीरों ने बच्चों को डूबते हुए देखा तो इसकी जानकारी ढिक्का गांव में दी। इसके बाद कई गोताखोर मौके पर पहुंचे और किशोरों को बचाने के लिए नदी में छलांग लगा दी, लेकिन उनकी कोशिश नाकाम रही और बच्चे यमुना के गहरे कुंड में फंस गए। करीब चार घंटे की मशक्कत के बाद शाम को चार बजे गोताखोर बच्चों के शव को ढूंढने में कामयाब रहे।

बताया जा रहा है कि विशेष और राहुल कई दिन पहले नाहरपुर गांव में अपनी रिश्तेदारी में आए थे। वीरवार को हैप्पी को साथ लेकर तीनों बाइक पर सवार होकर नदी में नहाने के लिए ढिक्का गांव में गये थे। वहां पर नदी में पानी कम था, इसलिए नहाने के लिए तीनों ही उतर गए, लेकिन तभी वे यमुना में बने कुंड में समा गए। https://www.amarujala.com/haryana/yamuna-nagar/three-youth-drowned-in-yamuna-river-and-died-yamuna-nagar-news-knl72767587  (11 June 2021)

मामले में परिजनों का कहना था कि तीनों ही किशोरों को तैरना आता था और रोजाना नदी पर नहाने जाते थे लेकिन कल अचानक तीनों नदी में डूब गए, जिसके बाद उन्हें तीनों की मौत की सूचना मिली। https://www.villageera.in/2021/06/hree-teenagers-drowned-while-bathing-in-Yamuna.html  (11 June 2021)

हरियाणा और दिल्ली के लोगों की प्यास बुझाने वाली जीवनदायिनी यमुना में बने गहरे कुंड लोगों की जान ले रहे हैं। जिले में करीब 75 किमी एरिया में बहने वाली यमुना नदी में सैकड़ों कुंड हैं। इनमें से अधिकतर की गहराई 40 से 50 फीट तक है। कई जगह यमुना केवल चार फीट गहरी नहर आती है, जब कोई इसमें जाता है तो विशाल कुंड में धंस जाता है। बड़े से बड़ा तैराक भी इसे पार नहीं कर पाता और मौत के आगोश में चला जाता है। हथनीकुंड बैराज से लेकर गुमथला तक यमुना नदी के किनारे 123 गांव हैं। विशेष अवसरों पर पूजा अर्चना के लिए पहुंचे श्रद्धालु स्नान करने के लिए यमुना घाट पर पहुंचते हैं, जो कुंड में धंसने से हादसे का शिकार हो जाते हैं। जिले में पिछले पांच साल में 100 से ज्यादा लोगों की जान इन कुंड की वजह से जा चुकी है।

एंटी करप्शन सोसायटी के संस्थापक एडवोकेट वरयाम सिंह का कहना है कि पहले प्राकृतिक रूप से कुछ स्थानों पर पानी खुद ब खुद कुंड बनाता था, जिनकी गहराई ज्यादा नहीं होती थी। अब अवैध खनन के कारण यमुना नदी में गहरे कुंड बन गए हैं। जो मौत का कारण बन रहे हैं। यमुना नदी क्षेत्र से अंधाधुंध रेत निकालने से बड़े गड्ढे बन गए हैं। ऐसे स्थानों पर यमुना का पानी भंवर की तरह घूम-घूमकर चलता है। https://www.amarujala.com/haryana/yamuna-nagar/every-year-many-youth-died-in-yamuna-yamuna-nagar-news-knl727680192  (11 June 2021)

Uttar Pradesh  बाँदा: मरौली मौरम खदान में कर्मी की डूबकर मौत बाँदा में मजदूरों की कब्रगाह बनती मौरम खदान इन दिनों सुर्खियों में है। बालू खदान में गहरे गड्ढों पर डूबकर मौत या फिर संदिग्ध मौत सामान्य घटनाक्रम बन रहा है। पूरे सिस्टम को साधकर यह खेल मौरम खदान में होता हैं। मजबूर आदमी की कोई तहरीर नहीं,हीं दबाव में लेकर मुंह बंद करने को रुपया ठूसने की हनक से यहां समझौता होता हैं। पीएम रिपोर्ट में डॉक्टर को साध लिया बांकी दो-तीन दिन बाद फिर वही पोकलैंड से अवैध खनन ढर्रा शुरू हो जाता हैं।

रविवार (June 13) को थाना मटौंधटौं के मरौली खँड 3 मेसर्स केएस एंड माइन्स में ओमप्रकाश नाम के मजदूर की नदी में डूबने से मौत होने की जानकारी हैं। मजदूर नदी में कैसे डूबा यह जांच का विषय हैं। उधर जांच करेगा कौन जब पूरी व्यवस्था ही रुपयों में बंधक हैं। मुख्यमंत्री तक बात नहीं पहुंचे इसके लिए मीडिया को चुप रखो। अलबत्ता इस पर बात करना इसलिए बेमानी हैं कि गरीबी क्षेत्र का लाभ उठाकर खनन संपदा का बेतरतीब दोहन यहां की नियति बन चुकी हैं। http://www.voiceofbundelkhand.in/crime/banda-death-of-a-worker-by-drowning-in-marauli-mauram-mine-section-3-ks-mines/  (13 June 2021)

अमलोर में केन नदी बनी वर्कशॉप पोकलैंड से खनन, धुलाई चित्रकूट मण्डल के बाँदा में महोबा की तरह खनिज अधिकारी व क्षेत्रीय एसडीएम को सरकार का भय नहीं है। बाँदा के पैलानी और आसपास मौरम खनन कारोबार की दबंगई देखकर यही लगता हैं। खनिज एक्ट 1963 की धारा 41-ज और पर्यावरण कानून के साथ प्रदूषण नियंत्रण बोर्ड की जल/ वायु सहमति की ताक पर रखकर अवैध खनन होता हैं। पूरे मौरम सत्र में चलने वाला हैवी उत्खनन जून के अंतिम माह में भी यथावत हैं। बतलाते चले कि पैलानी के अमलोर खंड 7 में विपुल त्यागी की फर्म का कामकाज किसी आनंद गुप्ता की देखरेख में चल रहा है। क्षेत्रीय बसपा नेता से लेकर मौरम दिग्गज तक खदान से तार जोड़े हैं।

उल्लेखनीय हैं यूपी उप खनिज परिहार नियमावली 1963 के सैंतालिसवें संशोधन के मुताबिक मौरम ठेकेदार नदी तट से 25 मीटर दूर रहकर सिर्फ लोडिंग और अनलोडिंग जेसीबी मशीनों से कर सकता हैं। बावजूद इसके हैवी पोकलैंड रातदिन नदी की जलधारा में खनन करती हैं। खनिज डीड से इतर सारे कानून की बखिया उधेड़ कर यह कारनामा क्षेत्र के प्रशासन की बदौलत मुकम्मल हैं। http://www.voiceofbundelkhand.in/uncategorized/banda-mining-and-washing-from-pokland-a-workshop-built-on-the-ken-river-in-amalor/  (13 June 2021) 

अमलोर और खपटिहा मौरम खण्ड से खंड-खंड होती केन https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ekd8Ku0M4x0  (04 June 2021)

Extracting outside of the lease in mines and overloading trucks for low license fees is an age-old game of sand theft. It is common in almost all mines. On the banks of the Ken River near the village of Ujrehena (Achhor) in the Mataundh Police Station, just a few kms from the division’s headquarters, illegal mining has long been practiced on a large scale.

Sand was extracted from Pokeland and JCB machines. There was no lease or permit here. Even so, mining continued indiscriminately. Millions of rupees worth of sand were lost. Surprisingly, this illegal mining was imperceptible day and night even to the officials of the mineral and the administration. https://www.uttarpradeshlive.com/mineral-mafia-commits-theft-and-embezzlement/  (02 June 2021) 

Lekhpal suspended for illegal sand mining Some villagers complained about the illegal sand mining in Nagwan. There is illegal mining and transportation by making room in the river. When the Mines and Treasury team investigated the matter, the complaint was upheld. The SDM said that even after Gopalji Nirala, Nagwan’s accountant, knew about illegal mining, he was immediately suspended for failing to inform senior officials. According to the SDM, there is woodland in Nagwan village. 150 cubic meters of sand was extracted by creating a path in it, 25 meters long, 12 meters wide and 0-5 meters deep. https://www.uttarpradeshlive.com/lekhpal-suspended-for-illegal-sand-mining-fir-on-unknown/  (02 June 2021)

Chitrakoot The search for the main suspect of the illegal sand mining and attack on the Bage River police team on the banks of the Orammasi village in the Pahari Police Station is in full swing. On Friday (June 4), the Pahari police team, with the help of Kamasin Police Station, reached the homes of many of the nominees, but found their homes hanging. Neighbors said the family members, including the defendant, locked their homes and went to an undisclosed location. Apart from that, the police team also searched the surrounding area including the village of Ora Mamsi, but the main defendants are fleeing. https://www.uttarpradeshlive.com/ghar-me-tala-band-ker-bhage-afsar-the-defendant-ran-away-after-locking-the-houses/  (04 June 2021)

Kairana Heavy trucks lining up on illegal bund built in the middle of river Yamuna at Mamor in Kairana tehsil under Shamali district while JCBs carrying on instream mining. There have been multiple incidents of violations in recent past however district admin has failed to deter the excessive, illegal sand mining there.  https://fb.watch/66_4IfjYVC/

Large scale illegal mining continues in Nanglarai, Mamor https://bharatkiaazadi.com/archives/1839  (13 June 2021)

Officers reached illegal mining site In response to the complaint about illegal mining in Mamaur, the team of officers formed under the leadership of ADM reached the site and carried out the measurement. In addition, the team also investigated the complaint about the crew of Sand in Mangalora by Karnal.

On June 2nd, two sand dump trucks were caught by the Anti Mining team in Karnal, Haryana. The video also went viral. In the video, the complainants alleged that illegal mining was being brought from Shamli to Haryana. The next day, the video of Sandstock in Mangalora, Karnal also went viral.

The Mamaur mining company has already been fined for illegal mining. The investigation, which was carried out on the villagers’ complaint, found illegal mining. Then the contractor was fined Rs 77 lakh 15,000. Apart from that, the Pollution Control Board has also fined Rs 4 lakh 80,000 and NGT. https://www.uttarpradeshlive.com/officers-reached-the-mining-site-and-carried-out-the-measurement/  (05 June 2021)

Mathura Illegal sand mining is not stopping Shergarh Ghat in the Tehsil area. At the instigation of the police, the mafia illegally evacuates sand from the Yamuna River day and night. On the other hand, the local police deny the illegal evacuation of sand from the ghat.

The active sand mafia in the Chail Tehsil region is not deterred by the illegal mining of sand from the Yamuna River. Pipari’s Shergarh, Sewdha, Pillow, Pathanpurwa, etc. drain the sand on Yamuna Ghat by following an illegal route from the sand mafia. https://www.uttarpradeshlive.com/illegal-sand-mining-does-not-stop-at-shergarh-ghat-in-pipri/  (15 May 2021)

घाघरा नदी की धारा के बीच ही डंप कर दिया करोड़ों कीमत का बालू भिखारीपुर-सकरौर बांध को टूटने से बचाने के लिए घाघरा नदी के बीच में ड्रेजिंग व चैनालाइजेशन कार्य हो रहा है। इस कार्य में निकलने वाले बालू की नीलामी की जानी हैं। लेकिन कई किलोमीटर तक करोड़ों रुपये का बालू नदी के बीचो-बीच डंप है और डंप बालू के दोनों ओर जलस्तर अधिक होने के कारण वहां से बालू निकालना मुश्किल हैं। जून के तीसरे सप्ताह में आने वाले मानसून से पहले डंप बालू नदी से नहीं निकाला गया तो बालू फिर से नदी में समा जाएगा।

तरबगंज तहसील अंतर्गत ऐली परसौली में घाघरा नदी के बाढ़ के पानी से बचाने के लिए लिए वर्ष 2007 में भिखारीपुर-सकरौर बांध का निर्माण कराया गया था। यह बांध अब तक कई बार टूट चुका हैं। पिछले साल भी घाघरा नदी का जलस्तर बढ़ने व कटान लगने से ऐली परसौली के विशुन पुरवा के पास यह बांध टूट गया था, जिससे कई हेक्टेयर फंसलों का नुकसान हुआ था और दर्जनों ग्रामीणों के आशियाने नदी में समा गए थे। इस बार घाघरा नदी के पानी से भिखारीपुर सकरौर बाँध को बचाने के लिए 7.2 किमी तक ड्रेजिंग व चैनालाइजेशन का काम किया जा रहा हैं।

इस कार्य का जिम्मा यूपी प्रोजेक्ट कार्पोरेशन को मिला हैं। बाढ़ नियंत्रण के नाम पर शुरू की गई इस परियोजना में नदियों की खुदाई कर उनकी नई धारा का निर्माण करना हैं। जिससे बांध को टूटने से बचाया जा सके।  https://www.amarujala.com/uttar-pradesh/gonda/sand-mining-gonda-news-lko580962785  (04 June 2021) https://www.uttarpradeshlive.com/sand-mining-the-crores-worth-of-sand-was-dumped-in-the-middle-of-the-ghaghra-river/  (04 June 2021)

गोंडा-बाराबंकी की सीमा पर बसे ग्राम बेहटा के पास दो दिन पूर्व तक चले बालू खनन के अड्डे पर बालू लोड करने गए करीब आधा दर्जन ट्रक व ट्राली ट्रैक्टर के साथ बालू खनन कर रही जेसीबी, पोकलैंड मशीन सरयू की बाढ़ के पानी में समाते जा रहे हैं। पानी बढ़ने के कारण घाघरा का जलस्तर तेजी से बढ़ने लगा और बालू खनन के अड्डे के चारों तरफ पानी भर गया। https://www.amarujala.com/uttar-pradesh/gonda/sand-mining-machines-and-vehicles-engulfed-in-saryu-floods-gonda-news-lko527722731  (25 June 2020)

Madhya Pradesh Sand mafia attacked my team, police failed to act promptly: forest officer Shradha Pandre said she called the police at least twice. “I informed the police after the seizure of tractor but police inspector of Devgarh police station refused to come. We decided to seize the tractor by ourselves just 1 km away from the police station near Lohikapura village. Over 100 people attacked us and stopped our vehicle by putting stones and thorny bushes on the road. I called the police once again, but they reached after 15 minutes,” she said.

She added special armed force guard Mukesh Sen sustained injuries in the attack. “We locked ourselves in the vehicle and rushed towards the police station.” Pandre said despite videos and clear evidence against the attackers, police registered a case under the Indian Penal Code’s Sections 147 (rioting), 336 (endangering life or personal safety of others), and 353 (assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty). “They are not willing to register a case under Section 307 (attempt to murder) as they do not want to take tough action against the mafia,” she added.

Pandre said the mafia has earlier eight times fired with country-made pistols, tried to mow down her, and attacked her with stones. She added the police just registered a case of assault. “The police said instead of spot action after receiving information related to illegal mining, I should have informed authorities and made plans accordingly. By doing this, I would only have given time to the mafia to get information on possible action and to run away from the spot. Villagers are sharing information with us as they have started trusting us. I do not want to do table work. I am a field officer, and it is my duty to stop illegal sand mining in the sanctuary area.”

Activists supported Pandre and accused local administration and police of allegedly patronising the mafia. “Pandre is doing a good job. The mining mafia could be controlled with prompt raids not with action by making a plan. I am sure that someone from the police department would have informed the villagers of the movement of the forest team on Wednesday night,” said Satendra Singh, a local social activist. https://www.hindustantimes.com/cities/others/sand-mafia-attacked-my-team-police-failed-to-act-promptly-mp-forest-officer-101623403225558.html  (11 June 2021)

मुरैना में वन विभाग की SDO पर हमला वन विभाग की एसडीओ श्रद्धा पांढ़रे पर बुधवार (June 9) रात ग्रामीणों ने हमला कर दिया। हमलावर अपने साथ बंदूक, लाठी, डंडा व फरसा लेकर आए थे। हमले के दौरान वन अमला गाड़ी से नहीं उतरा। अगर उतरता तो बड़ी घटना घट सकती थी। हमलावरों ने फायरिंग भी की तथा विभाग की पकड़ से अवैध रेत से भरा ट्रैक्टर-ट्रॉली छुड़ा ले गए। श्रद्धा पांढ़रे पर पिछले दो माह में यह 9वां हमला था। इससे पहले आठ बार उन पर खनन माफियाओं की ओर से हमला किया जा चुका है। इस बार के हमले में सौ से ज्यादा ग्रामीण शामिल थे। हमलावर रेत माफिया के आदमी बताए जाते हैं।

हमलावरों ने एसडीओ पांढ़रे पर जब हमला किया तो उसी दौरान उनके साथ गाड़ी में बैठे एसएएफ का जवान सामने आ गया और उसके हाथ में चोट लग गई जिससे उसका हाथ फ्रैक्चर हो गया। रेत माफिया को बचाने आए अपने सामने लगभग एक सैकड़ा ग्रामीणों को देखकर वन अमले ने अपनी गाड़ियां वापस करने में ही भलाई समझी और वापस लौट गए। इस दौरान हमलावर फायरिंग करते हुए रेत से भरी ट्रैक्टर-ट्रॉली छुड़ा कर ले गए। रेत से भरी ट्रैक्टर-ट्रॉली छुड़ाकर ले जाने के बाद भी जब ग्रामीणों का मन नहीं भरा तो वे वापस हमला करने फिर लौटे। इस पर वन अमले ने भी फायरिंग की जिससे वह लोग भाग गए।

इस मामले में देवगढ़़ थाना प्रभारी की भूमिका संदिग्ध बताई जा रही है। पहले तो एसडीओ के बुलाने पर वह नहीं आए, न ही पुलिस फोर्स को भेजा। इसके बाद जब हमला हो गया तो वह एसडीओ से बोले कि वह एसडीओपी से बात कर लें। एसडीओ ने मीडिया को बताया कि जब उन्होंने ग्रामीणों व माफिया के लोगों से पूछा कि पुलिस क्यों नहीं रोक रही है। इस पर उन्होंने बताया कि वह पुलिस को एन्ट्री फीस दे रहे हैं। एसडीओ ने बताया कि पुलिस उनका बिल्कुल सहयोग नहीं कर रही है।

वन विभाग को डंप रेत की सूचना देने वाले एक व्यक्ति की भी पिछले दिनों हत्या की जा चुकी है। उसकी हत्या उसी रेत माफिया ने की थी जिसकी डंप रेत को एसडीओ पांढ़रे ने जब्त किया था। हत्या करने के बाद चिन्नौनी थाना पुलिस ने मारने वाले के पक्ष में कोई कार्यवाई नहीं की। मंगलवार  (June 8) को भी रेत से भरे एक डंपर को जब्त किया गया था। इसी दौरान डंपर चालक ने एसडीओ की गाड़ी में टक्कर मारी और भाग गया। बाद में जब वन विभाग के अमले ने उसका पीछा किया तो वह डंपर छोड़कर भाग गया था। https://www.bhaskar.com/local/mp/gwalior/morena/news/hundreds-of-villagers-brought-sticks-sticks-and-axes-fired-and-took-away-the-tractor-full-of-sand-the-attack-took-place-for-the-ninth-time-in-two-months-128578821.html  (10 June 2021)

मुरैना में रविवार (June 13) की सुबह रेत से भरी ट्रैक्टर-ट्राली का पीछा करने के दौरान वन अमले ने गोली चला दी। ट्रेक्टर चालक ट्रेक्टर को नगरा क्षेत्र के अमोलपुरा गांव में ले गया था। गोली लगने से एक ग्रामीण की मौत हो गई। ऐसा बताया जा रहा है कि वन विभाग की टीम अवैध रेत के ट्रैक्टर का पीछा कर रहा था इस दौरान ट्रैक्टर का ड्राइवर ट्रॉली सहित अमोलपुरा गांव में घुस गया। वन अमला भी पीछे-पीछे घुस गया। इस बीच वन विभाग की टीम ने गोली चला दी जिससे एक ग्रामीण की मौत हो गई।

मृतक की पहचान महावीर सिंह तोमर के रूप में हुई है। ग्रामीणों का आरोप है कि वन विभाग के स्टाफ की गोली से महावीर की मौत हुई है। उधर महावीर को गोली लगने के बाद गांव के लोग आक्रोशित हो गए और वन विभाग की टीम पर टूट पड़े इसके बाद टीम जान बचाने के लिए सरकारी गाड़ी छोड़कर भाग निकली। इसके बाद ग्रामीणों ने विभाग की गाडि़यों को क्षतिग्रस्त कर दिया साथ ही ही मुख्य सड़क पर जा रहे एक अन्य वाहन के भी शीशे तोड़ दिए। https://newsmailtoday.com/?p=21451  (13 June 2021)

Stone mafia targets Chambal patrol staff Mining mafia members emptied a stone-laden tractor-trolley in the middle of a road, a few feet away from the patrolling vehicle of Chambal sanctuary staff who were chasing them. Illegally-mined stones rolled down dangerously from the hydraulic trolley and blocked the road and the patrolling party chasing the mafia had a miraculous escape.

Mining activities are banned in Morena’s Chambal sanctuary. But the mafia continues to mine sand and stone with impunity, police sources said. The forest department personnel and police had to open fire at the sand mafia in Morena in the wee hours of May 22. The mafia, smuggling sand, tried to run over the staff patrolling near the Chambal river. It is the third such incident in the recent past when the mining mafia tried to run over field staff of the forest department protecting the Chambal gharial sanctuary.  https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/bhopal/stone-mafia-targets-chambal-patrol-staff/articleshow/83349979.cms  (09 June 2021)

Forest department team attacked by sand mafia A team of forest department in Morena had a miraculous escape on Saturday (May 22). A tractor- trolley laden with illegally excavated sand tried to run over the team. This is the third incident in last one month when the SDO Shraddha Padhare was targeted by the mining mafia. In the past, mining had hit the vehicle of Padhare and also opened fire on her vehicle.  https://www.freepressjournal.in/bhopal/morena-forest-department-team-attacked-by-sand-mafia-third-incident-in-last-1-month-when-government-team-was-targeted  (22 May 2021)

11 लाख रुपए की घूस लेते वीडियो वायरल रीवा में इन दिनों एक अफसर का वीडियो वाॅर चल रहा है। यहां औद्योगिक विकास निगम के क्षेत्रीय कार्यालय के प्रभारी कार्यकारी संचालक का 11 लाख रुपए की रिश्वत लेते वीडियो वायरल हुआ। इसके बाद अफसर ने दबाव डलवाकर बचाव में घूस देने वालों से ही वीडियो जारी करवाकर सफाई दिलवा दी।

वीडियो वायरल होने के बाद एपी सिंह द्वारा बचाव में उन्हीं से वीडियो जारी कराया। ​वीडियो में विनोद कुमार सचिव धर्मपाल एंड कंपनी रोहतक ने बताया कि ये रिश्वत का पैसा नहीं है, बल्कि बालू ठेकेदार श्रीकांत चतुर्वेदी का पैसा है, जो सप्लाई के माल का पैसा था। मामले में प्रभारी संचालक एपी सिंह का कहना है कि जो वीडियो सोशल मीडिया में वायरल हो रहा है, वह गलत है। हमने किसी से पैसे नहीं लिए हैं। ये मामला श्रीकांत चतुर्वेदी और विनोद कुमार के वीडियो को देखकर समझ सकते हैं। https://www.bhaskar.com/local/mp/rewa/news/video-of-industrial-development-corporation-officer-taking-bribe-of-11-lakhs-goes-viral-video-got-released-from-those-who-took-money-in-defense-128555301.html  (03 June 2021)

Maharashtra BJP corporator beats women BJP councilor Gaurav Chaudhary from Nandurbar has allegedly beaten up women talathis in a sand inspection team appointed by a tehsildar. Corporator Gaurav Chaudhary assaulted Nisha Pavara, a woman talathi in the squad. The incident has caused a stir in the area. Police have registered a case against the officer.

Gaurav Chaudhary’s vehicle transporting sand from Gujarat to Maharashtra did not have zero ownership acknowledgment. So the inspection team stopped a truck transporting sand for two hours. The truck driver then tried to hijack the truck. At this time, Nisha Pawar and two other female talathi employees chased the tehsildar’s vehicle and stopped the truck. https://www.tv9marathi.com/crime/bjp-corporator-beats-up-woman-officer-for-blocking-sand-truck-470727.html  (05 June 2021)

Illegal sand mining is major issue. Govt officials & politicians turned local contractors are hand in glove in this high earning shoddy business. If any upright officers take actions, then he/she faces the wrath of the contractors. Lady officer is manhandled by BJP corporator. https://twitter.com/ss_suryawanshi/status/1401531839412506624?s=20  (06 June 2021)

Sand mafia attacks woman police constable  A woman police constable was beaten up by sand mafia on March 15 at Wai Bazar in Nanded. While stopping a tractor transporting illegally without royalty, the tractor driver was asked for a receipt for the royalty by the female police patrol. A case has been registered against sand mafias in Sindkhed police under various sections including obstruction of government work. The sand mafia in the area has been hit hard by the filing of the crime. 

Nowhere in the Nanded district has there been an auction of sand dunes by the revenue administration. Illegal sand extraction is on a large scale. It is said that this illegal sand extraction is being carried out with the blessings of big officials in the revenue department.  https://maharashtratimes.com/maharashtra/aurangabad/sand-mafia-attacks-on-women-police-patil-case-registered/articleshow/81521075.cms  (16 March 2021)

Jharkhand बालू के अवैध खनन से पुल को खतरा झरिया विधानसभा के सुदामडीह रिवर साइड में दामोदर नदी व भोजूडीह को जोड़ने वाले नए पुल के नीचे अवैध बालू खनन से इस पर खतरा बढ़ गया है। पुल के दूसरी छोर पर पोकलेन मशीन से बालू व मिट्टी की कटाई की जा रही है। अगर जल्द सरकार व जिला प्रशासन ने ठोस कदम नहीं उठाया गया तो यहां भी हादसा होने की संभावना से इंकार नहीं किया जा सकता है। सुदामडीह पुल के अंतिम छोर भोजूडीह के पास पुल के पाया कि नीचे से पोकलेन मशीन लगाकर बालू का खनन कई दिनों से किया जा रहा है। इससे पुल के भविष्य पर खतरा मंडराने लगा है।

स्थानीय लोगों का कहना है कि पुल के पास गहराई तक भारी मात्रा में बालू की कटाई की जा रही है। पुल के पास कार्य कर रहे युवक ने बताया कि यह कार्य बंगाल के पीडीसीएल थर्मल प्लांट के जीएम के आदेश पर किया जा रहा है। पुल निर्माण के बाद इसके नीचे बालू व मिट्टी का काफी जमाव हो गया है। गर्मी के समय में थर्मल प्लांट को जाने वाला पानी पंप के पास नहीं पहुंच रहा है। इससे काफी परेशानी हो रही है। इसलिए प्रबंधन ने बालू व मिट्टी हटाने का कार्य अंबुज महथा को दिया है। बालू व मिट्टी कटाई का कोई कागजात लोग नहीं दिखा पाए। अगर पुल के पास बालू खनन को नहीं रोका गया तो बारिश में हादसा हो सकता है। https://www.jagran.com/jharkhand/dhanbad-former-chief-minister-raghubar-das-targeted-hemant-soren-government-to-risk-sudamdih-bridge-due-to-illegal-sand-mining-21700103.html  (01 June 2021)

झारखंड की नदियों पर बने 9 पुलों को बालू माफियाओं ने खोखला कर दिया है. दामोदर, स्वर्णरेखा, कोयल, शंख जैसी नदियों पर बने उच्चस्तरीय पुल कभी भी कांची पुल की तरह जमींदोज हो सकते हैं. इनमें से अधिकांश नये पुल हैं, लेकिन पिलरों से सटाकर जिस तरह बालू निकाला जा रहा है, उससे नहीं लग रहा कि ये पुल एक-दो साल से ज्यादा चल पायेंगे. पुल टूटने के बाद इसे बनाने वाले ठेकेदार, इंजीनियर और सरकार पर उंगली उठेगी. गुणवत्ता पर सवाल उठेंगे और फिर जांच होगी.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wHjekDYGA4k&t=29s

इंजीनियरों के मुताबिक बारिश के दिनों में नदी के तेज बहाव के साथ बालू बह कर पिलर से टकराता है, फिर वहीं पर जमा हो जाता है. यह प्रक्रिया हर दिन होती है. इस वजह से पिलर के पास बड़ी मात्रा मे बालू का जमाव होता है और उसकी क्वालिटी भी अच्छी होती है. ऐसे में नदी के अन्य हिस्सों को छोड़ ज्यादा फोकस पिलर के पास जमे बालू के ही उठाव पर होता है. https://lagatar.in/these-9-bridges-have-been-hollowed-out-by-the-sand-mafia-they-can-be-grounded-at-any-time-like-the-kanchi-bridge/80289/  (02 June 2021)

Jammu & Kashmir Regulate sand mining With thousands of tonnes removed from the river and put alongside, the quarries soon became gold mines for traders. In just a few years the price of a truck load carrying about 200 cubic ft of sand increased from Rs 5000 to as much as Rs 8000. The cost of transportation and labor together being not more than 30 percent of the sale value, the miners are minting money. Hundreds of truckloads are sold by miners and most of them do not have a license or pay any fee. Unregulated mining of sand has also caused environmental problems in many areas where the mineral is lifted. Health concerns have also been raised since there is spillover of the mineral while it is being transported. Dust and pollution near sand quarries is quite visible.  http://risingkashmir.com/home/news_description/377072/Regulated-sand-mining  (03 June 2021)

Turkwangam bridge in Shopian damaged by illegal stone and sand mining https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=na4c6Oj0UgY  (27 May 2021)

Odisha Rampant sand mining causing erosion Excess sand lifting from the Budhabalanga river bed leading to land erosion and lack of compensation for the same, has sparked anger among locals of Badasahi tehsil in Mayurbhanj. Absence of local development as part of royalty is also contributing to the simmering discontentment.

Residents of Arapata revenue village, which comprises over 1,000 families, are now alleging the tehsildar of conniving with the illegal sand mafia and depriving them of their due entitlements. Sources said in 2016-17, the tehsildar of Badasahi, Mamtaj Maharana, gave permission to a leaseholder Pradeep Bindhani to lift 2,900 cubic metre of sand instead of 2,400 from over 13 acres of the river bed, five years. https://www.newindianexpress.com/states/odisha/2021/jun/07/rampant-sand-mining-lifts-away-peace-of-farmers-in-odisha-2312760.html  (07 June 2021)

Locals protest against illegal sand mining in Jajpur Locals on Friday (June 4) protested against the illegal sand mining by some influential persons in the rivers Brahmani and Kelua under Dharmasala block in Jajpur district. The agitated villagers of Uttarpratap and other nearby villages stopped sand lifting works and detained the vehicles which were transporting sand.

Sources said a few persons recently managed to obtain sand leases illegally by greasing the palms of some corrupt officials. These people are creating a law and order situation in the villages. There has been a rampant increase in the illegal sand mining before the arrival of monsoon as during the rainy season it would be difficult to carry out mining from the swollen rivers. https://www.dailypioneer.com/2021/state-editions/locals-protest-illegal-sand-mining-in-jajpur.html  (05 June 2021)

Tehsildar Attacked By Sand Mafia During Raid In Nilagiri In a shocking incident members of sand mafia attacked the Tehsildar of Nilagiri in Balasore district of Odisha during a raid at sand quarry on Thursday (Dec. 24, 2020). According to reports, the Tehsildar of Nilagiri, Ashesh Nayak was investigating illegal sand mining in the Punadal area. During this investigation some miscreants who were linked with sand mafia attacked him and held him captive. On being informed about the incident the police reached the spot and rescued the government official. A tractor has been seized in connection to illegal sand mining and a probe is under way to nab the miscreants. https://kalingatv.com/state/tehsilder-attacked-by-sand-mafia-during-raid-in-nilagiri-of-odisha/  (24 Dec. 2020)

Tamil Nadu 2 men killed as sand quarry caves in at Kancheepuram Two men, who were working at a private sand quarry near Uthiramerur in Kancheepuram district, were killed when the sand caved in reportedly due to the rains on Monday (June 7) evening. Operations are still underway on Tuesday (June 8) to remove the bodies from debris. The two men were migrant labourers from Jharkhand and Madhya Pradesh. The police personnel will also initiate an inquiry to find out if the quarry has the permit and whether all safety norms were followed.

In February, there was a similar incident where a worker was killed and two others suffered injuries after a stone quarry caved in at Kancheepuram district. The incident took place while the workers were breaking stones on the premises and suddenly a portion of the quarry caved in. The stones fell on those working in the quarry. Then Tiruvallur District Collector Mageswari Ravikumar called engineers from the Department of Geology and Mining to check the stability of the quarry and then ordered them to take action against the culprits. https://www.thenewsminute.com/article/two-men-killed-sand-quarry-caves-kancheepuram-150311  (08 June 2021)

Kerala Residents intensify stir against ‘mineral sand-mining’ at Thottappally  Protest is brewing against ‘mineral sand-mining’ at the Thottappally coast in Alappuzha. The indefinite relay satyagraha being staged under the aegis of the Karimanal Ghanana Virudha Ekopana Samithi entered its third day on Saturday (June 12).

Suresh Kumar S., chairman of the Samithi said, the indiscriminate mineral sand-mining could wipe out three grama panchayats — Purakkad, Thrikkunnapuzha, and Arattupuzha — from the map in the near future. “It is an ecologically fragile area. Mineral sand-mining should not be allowed in public, private or as joint ventures in fragile areas. While people are forced to remain home because of the lockdown, mining and transportation of mineral-rich sand continue unabated at Thottappally,” Mr. Kumar said.

The coastline is prone to severe coastal erosion. A large number of people in Thottappally and nearby areas were displaced when their houses were destroyed in sea erosion. Residents fear the sand-mining would prove detrimental to those living along the shorelines from Valiazheekal to Punnapra. https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/residents-intensify-stir-against-mineral-sand-mining-at-thottappally/article34796402.ece  (12 June 2021)

Andhra Pradesh TDP seeks action on illegal sand mining in Penna TDP spokesperson Anam Venkata Ramana Reddy came down heavily on illegal sand mining in Penna River close to Nellore city. Addressing media on Friday (June 4), he said the contractors acting as benami to Minister P Anil Kumar Yadav who were openly loading sand into tractors and trucks using JCBs disregarding the rules and no official is taking action against the irregularity. The TDP said the sand being shifted to parts of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka and earning more than Rs 30 lakh per day. He said the stocks sold out for the last ten days have been more than Rs. 3 Cr and asked the government whether it is encouraging this kind of illegal earning. He demanded a probe into the issue and initiate action against the responsible. https://www.thehansindia.com/andhra-pradesh/nellore-tdp-seeks-action-on-illegal-sand-mining-in-penna-689326  (05 June 2021)  

Karnataka MP property near Cauvery Wildlife Sanctuary Conservationists and locals are worried about ongoing construction work on private land abutting Cauvery Wildlife Sanctuary (CWS), especially so as it is going on in full swing even during the lockdown. Though the construction is on private land, work and constant movement of vehicles has been creating much disturbance on this forest patch. Conservationists and locals state that illegal sand mining is also happening in the guise of construction work, which will have a long lasting impact on the sensitive wildlife corridor and river course.

The property in contention belongs to Congress MP DK Suresh, brother of KPCC President DK Shivakumar. Suresh has 30 acres of private land abutting CWS in Hale Kote in R Shivanahalli village, of Uyamballi hobli of Ramanagar district. https://www.newindianexpress.com/states/karnataka/2021/jun/02/greens-fret-over-works-on-mp-dk-sureshs-property-near-cauvery-wildlife-sanctuary-2310621.html  (02 June 2021)

WETLANDS, LAKES, WATER BODIES

Mangroves matter In the wake of back-to-back cyclones, experts highlight the importance of mangrove forests in protecting the coastal regions against the damaging effects of storms. https://www.thehindu.com/children/why-mangroves-matter/article34743502.ece  (06 June 2021)

Kerala Probe begins into wetland conversion PalakkadDistrict collector Mrunmai Joshi has started an investigation into large-scale complaints of conversion of wetland in Shoranur municipality violating the rules of the Kerala Conversion of Paddy Land and Wetland Act, 2008.

She directed Ottapalam sub-collector Shikha Surendran to provide the land records on the converted land from the village offices and krishi bhavans. The two village offices and the agriculture officer will submit their reports to the sub-collector this week, it is learned.

Agriculture minister P Prasad had ordered an investigation on the complaint by Shoranur Padasekhara Samithy that 350 acre of wetland was converted by Shoranur municipality and a gazette notification was issued making it dry land. The converted land includes three-crop paddy land near Shoranur-Cheruthuruthy check dam in Bharathapuzha. https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/kochi/probe-begins-into-wetland-conversion/articleshow/83444518.cms  (12 June 2021)

WATER OPTIONS

Kerala Kasaragod recharges groundwater levels by ~9 metres in 2 years District Collector Sajith Babu said in a statement that water levels in wells in Kasargod and neighbouring Manjeshwaram have increased by almost nine metres, as a result of scientific water conservation methods. These measures include the construction of temporary check dams and reviving streams over the past two years.

The district administration said that they have launched several inter-department conservation projects in the district. The rise in groundwater levels was studied by observing 67 open borewells in six blocks of the district from May 2019 to May 2021. Through this exercise, the authorities observed the nine-metre rise, they said. The study was conducted as part of the Jal Shakti Abhiyan under the Union Ministry of Water Resources.

Apart from constructing check dams and reviving streams, the measures taken to improve water conservation included rainwater harvesting, construction of watersheds and recharging of wells. Kasargod district has the highest number of borewells in the state, which is the highest means of groundwater extraction. The GEC study also states that groundwater availability for future use is 5,176 HaM, which is the lowest in the state.

In July 2019, Ashok Kumar Singh, a Union government delegate who reached the district to review the situation, said that Kasaragod was among the 255 districts in the country that faced severe drinking water shortage. Palakkad was another district from Kerala on the list. https://www.thenewsminute.com/article/keralas-kasaragod-recharges-groundwater-levels-almost-9-metres-two-years-150570  (12 June 2021)

Andhra Pradesh ‘Water champion’ changes Farmers’ lives for better Hinterlands in Thamballapalle region, once parched and unexplored, are now thriving with lush green fields, due to T Pareshamma and her persistent efforts towards water conservation. Farmhands in Thamballapalle and surrounding areas now grow millet and other cereals, instead of paddy and tomato, since the former require less water and can be grown in any environment.

32 year-old Pareshamma joined Foundation for Ecological Security (FES) as a panchayat resource person (PRP) in 2015. At present, she works as a PRP volunteer and educates farmers and MGNREGA workers on water harvesting. She also suggests the farmers of 16 villages in the region on what crops to grow that consume less water. https://www.newindianexpress.com/states/andhra-pradesh/2021/jun/13/water-champion-changes-farmers-lives-for-better-2315556.html  (13 June 2021)

Arunachal Pradesh Rejuvenating springs The community’s effort to grasp the various facets of the issue and mobilize themselves is essential to develop effective interventions. Through this adaptive strategy of scientific and traditional knowledge systems, Jongjong Gapsa Ri is being rehabilitated. The villagers, now trained in taking discharges and rainfall readings are continuously monitoring the discharge of the spring and are also enthusiastic about reviving other threatened spring sources. https://www.indiawaterportal.org/article/rejuvenating-springs-western-arunachal-pradesh-0  (09 June 2021)

Madhya Pradesh Conservation of water commons through community fishery The Changariya village institution collectively framed rules for the governance and management of these water commons. https://www.indiawaterportal.org/article/conservation-water-commons-through-community-fishery  (18 April 2021)

From India Water Portal on June 5, 2021, World Environment Day: Meet these real-life heroes, who with their consistent and tireless efforts created an impact and turned their local areas into examples to follow. https://www.indiawaterportal.org/article/not-all-heroes-wear-capes-some-fight-amongst-us  (04 June 2021)

URBAN WATER

Urban Water, Weakest Link In Water-Food-Energy-Climate Nexus Interesting from Ajitabh Sharma, Chairman and Managing Director, Jaipur Metro Rail Corporation Ltd.: “It is vital for water utilities in metropolitan areas to have a mindset shift because heavy infrastructure investments in supply systems is not a silver bullet. There is a need to explore mixed approaches that draw its efficiency from decentralised systems: such as on-site sanitation solutions, nature-based systems, treatment up to fit-for-purpose standards, and direct use of treated water for non-potable and ecosystem services. The overarching framework of management has to be utilising water in a closed-loop and make it an essential component of the circular economy.”  https://egov.eletsonline.com/2021/06/urban-water-the-weakest-link-in-the-water-food-energy-climate-nexus/  (07 June 2021)

IISc facility can detect water pollutants at low concentration A facility setup at the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) can be a key in identifying the sources of water pollution and even assessing the efficiency of remediation methods. The multi-instrument facility includes Quadrupole Inductively Couple Plasma Mass Spectrometer fitted with collision reaction cell (QQQ-ICP-MS), and an Inductively Couple Plasma Optical Emission Spectrometer with dual detection capability (ICP-OES).

IISc is among the cluster of institutes that was awarded the ‘Fast Forward to SGD6: Acceptable and affordable water in secondary Indian cities (4WARD)’ project under its its Urban Water Systems programme. The project is meant to identify and better the water quality of tier two cities. The other institutes are IIT Bombay, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, and Amritha Vishwa Vidyapeetham. https://www.newindianexpress.com/cities/bengaluru/2021/jun/11/iiscfacility-can-detect-water-pollutants-at-low-concentration-2314724.html  (11 June 2021)

Hyderabad Politicians encouraging encroachments of water bodies  Despite repeated orders of Telangana High Court, Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) has failed in removing encroachments over city water bodies, including River Musi, city lakes and nalas. The failure of civic body has resulted in thousands of illegal structures including cattle sheds, multiple-storey buildings and mechanic sheds coming up on buffer zones of water bodies. Failure of authorities to contain illegal structures would compel one to think they are hand-in-glove with those behind illegal structures.  https://www.deccanchronicle.com/nation/politics/080621/politicians-encouraging-encroachments-of-water-bodies.html  (09 June 2021)

Groundwater table hits new low GWD observed that in May 2020 and May 2021 -considered as ‘peak’ months in the summer season- the ground water depleted between 0.34 meters and 5.27 meters depth below to the ground level. “Usually, the consumption during summer is high, but with the pandemic situation, residents couldn’t leave the city due to lockdown. As a result, they extracted more water,” a GWD official said.

According to the GWD report, in May 2020, the recorded ground water table was 20.90 meters, but in May 2021, the table fell to 18.35 meters. “Groundwater percolated due to copious rainfall. Additionally, the October floods could have also added to the water table,” the ground water department’s analyst said. The GWD predicts that the city may witness a rise in the ground water table this rainy season, based on the IMD’s forecast. https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/hyderabad/pandemic-draw-groundwater-table-hits-new-lows-in-city/articleshow/83292375.cms  (07 June 2021)

Chennai Water Sustainability Assessment Report launched The Mahindra-TERI Centre of Excellence (CoE), a joint research initiative of Mahindra Lifespaces® and The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI), has launched a report highlighting the potential water challenges in Chennai Metropolitan Area (CMA).

– Considering the current urban growth trend in Chennai, the city’s built-up area is estimated to increase to 708.3 km2 in 2025, or thrice the area in 1997. At the same time, the city’s water bodies are expected to shrink to 38.4 km2 by 2025, or one-third of their coverage in 1997. The quantity of wastewater generated in Chennai is estimated to increase to 1,789.2 MLD by 2025. https://www.constructionweekonline.in/people/18074-mahindra-teri-centre-of-excellence-launches-chennai-water-sustainability-assessment-report  (08 June 21)

Tertiary treatment plants coming up Chennai Metrowater has completed about 60% of the work to construct two tertiary treatment plants in the city. The tertiary treatment plants using ultrafiltration (TTUF) are coming up at Perungudi and Nesapakkam with a capacity to treat 10 mld. Treated wastewater would be discharged into Porur and Perungudi lakes. Officials of the Metrowater said the pilot projects would help recharge the groundwater table in localities in a radius of minimum five km and also promote indirect use of recycled water.

The team from IIT Madras and Metrowater would study the groundwater table and quality near the lakes to assess the impact of the project.  The Rs.18-crore project is set to be completed by January next year. Once these pilot projects are in place, the capacity of tertiary treatment of sewage would be scaled up. The water agency has already submitted a detailed project report for the reuse of 260 mld of reclaimed water to the World Bank for funding. https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/tertiary-treatment-plants-coming-up-in-the-city-to-help-groundwater-recharge/article34671671.ece  (29 May 2021)

Vadodara Residents allege water contamination killed woman A major ruckus took place at the Vadodara Municipal Corporation (VMC) ward office in Nagarwada area of the city on June 10, 2021 over supply of contaminated water. The residents of Mali Mohalla in the locality claimed that a woman who had taken ill in the area due to contaminated water died.

The residents had rushed to the ward office alleging that several persons in the locality were ill and a woman had died due to contaminated water. They ransacked the office and broke some glass of the office. A team of police personnel rushed to the office and brought the situation under control. The VMC did not file an offence regarding the incident. https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/vadodara/residents-allege-water-contamination-killed-a-woman-in-nagarwada-area/articleshow/83411038.cms  (11 June 2021)

Chandigarh Dirty water floods street as trash dump wall gives way  Dirty water from the waste dump flooded the nearby street at Dadu Majra after a part of the boundary wall collapsed in the rain on June 13 night. Residents living close to the boundary wall had a tough time as the night rain and the dirty water flowing from the dump compounded their problems. They blamed closing of drain by ‘politician’ for wall collapse. https://www.tribuneindia.com/news/chandigarh/dirty-water-floods-street-as-trash-dump-wall-gives-way-267665  (13 June 2021)

WATER POLLUTION

Rajasthan Budget constraint can’t justify violation: NGT The NGT has slammed the civic authorities in Bikaner over a report on a STP, saying a plea of budget cannot be taken to justify continued violation of the Water Act and the citizens’ right to clean environment. A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel said the officer who has filed the affidavit does not have the requisite knowledge of law and responsibilities of the state pollution control board.

The executive officer of the municipal board in Nokha had told the tribunal that the existing STP could not be repaired and operated due to non-availability of sufficient budget. The NGT gave one last opportunity for compliance, failing which the secretary of the departments concerned i.e. local bodies/urban development/local self department and the member secretary of the state PCB will be held personally accountable, by way of coercive measures laid down under sections 25 and 26 of the NGT Act, 2010 (NGT Act).

The NGT directed the member secretary of the state PCB and the secretary of the department concerned to be present in person by video conferencing with a compliance status on September 21. The tribunal was hearing a plea filed by resident Bhanwar Lal Bhargava over discharge of untreated sewage and industrial effluent on agriculture land in Bikaner’s Nokha village. https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/india/budget-constraint-cant-justify-violation-of-citizens-right-to-a-clean-environment-says-ngt/articleshow/83479390.cms  (13 June 2021)

Haryana Industries cannot operate without prior EC: NGT The green panel said prior EC is required under EIA Notification dated September 14, 2006 and there is no justification to permit function of such units in violation of mandate of law. The tribunal’s observation came on a plea filed by NGO Dastak seeking quashing of the order of the Haryana government allowing manufacturers of formaldehyde, requiring prior EC, to operate for six months without the clearance, subject to making application for it within 60 days.

The NGT in its order said, “We have no doubt that the stand of the private respondents will be duly considered by the concerned regulatory authorities, including the MoEF on merits and in accordance with law but till compliance of statutory mandate, the units cannot be allowed to function.” The tribunal said that for past violations, the concerned authorities are free to take appropriate action in accordance with polluter pays principle, following due process. https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/industries-cannot-operate-without-prior-environment-clearance-says-ngt-101623050958606.html  (07 June 2021)

JJM/ RURAL WATER SUPPLY

Centre allocates Rs 10,870 cr to UP Union Government has increased the Central allocation for the implementation of Jal Jeevan Mission to Uttar Pradesh to Rs 10,870.50 Crore. In 2019-20, Central Government allocated Rs 1,206 crore, which was increased to Rs 2,571 crore in 2020-21. Thus, this year Central allocation for implementation of Jal Jeevan Mission in Uttar Pradesh has increased four-fold.

There are 2.63 Crore households in 97 thousand villages, out of which now 30.04 lakh (11.3%) households have tap water supply in their homes. Before the launch of JJM only 5.16 lakh (1.96%) household had tap water supply. In last 21 months, under JJM, the State has provided tap water supply to 24.89 lakh (9.45%) households. Despite this, there are about 2.33 Crore household without tap water. http://www.millenniumpost.in/nation/jal-jeevan-mission-centre-allocates-rs-10870-cr-to-up-443188?infinitescroll=1  (12 June 2021)

AGRICULTURE

Short-duration paddy varieties can turn tide Among paddy’s short-duration varieties, PR 121 and PR 126 need 15-25% lesser irrigations than the long-duration variety, Pusa 44. PR 121 and PR 126 mature in 140 and 123 days, respectively, while Pusa 44 matures in about 160 days after seeding. There is also saving in pesticides and labour. https://www.tribuneindia.com/news/punjab/short-duration-paddy-varieties-can-turn-the-tide-264670  (07 June 2021)

MONSOON 2021

Study Monsoons likely to get worse New paper, published on June 4, 2021:  https://advances.sciencemag.org/content/advances/7/23/eabg3848.full.pdf) in the journal Science Advances, adds evidence for the theory by looking back over the past million years to give a sense of monsoons to come.

– The researchers had no time machine, so they used the next best thing: mud. They drilled core samples in the Bay of Bengal, in the northern Indian Ocean, where the runoff from monsoon seasons drains away from the subcontinent. The core samples were 200 meters long, and provided a rich record of monsoon rainfall. Wetter seasons put more fresh water into the bay, reducing the salinity at the surface. The plankton that live at the surface die and sink to the sediment below, layer after layer.

– the risk of “catastrophically strong” seasons is growing, and the increasingly erratic nature of the seasons holds its own risks. “And it is hitting the largest democracy on the planet; in many ways, the most challenged democracy on the planet,” he said.

– ABSTRACT OF THE SCIENCE PAPER: South Asian precipitation amount and extreme variability are predicted to increase due to thermodynamic effects of increased 21st-century greenhouse gases, accompanied by an increased supply of moisture from the southern hemisphere Indian Ocean. We reconstructed South Asian summer monsoon precipitation and runoff into the Bay

of Bengal to assess the extent to which these factors also operated in the Pleistocene, a time of large-scale natural changes in carbon dioxide and ice volume. South Asian precipitation and runoff are strongly coherent with, and lag, atmospheric carbon dioxide changes at Earth’s orbital eccentricity, obliquity, and precession bands and are closely tied to cross-equatorial wind strength at the precession band. We find that the projected monsoon response to ongoing, rapid high-latitude ice melt and rising carbon dioxide levels is fully consistent with dynamics of the past 0.9 million years. https://www.nytimes.com/2021/06/04/climate/monsoons-climate-change.html  (04 June 2021)

Thirty scientists from India, the US, Australia, Japan and Europe travelled to the Bay of Bengal in 2014 on a two-month voyage and extracted core samples from the ocean. They reconstructed South Asian summer monsoon precipitation and runoff into the Bay of Bengal and northern Indian Ocean.  https://scroll.in/latest/996895/indian-monsoons-may-get-wetter-deadlier-shows-new-research  (07 June 2021)

Use of satellite data products in operational weather services Dr A K Mitra https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XdvSwewuVb8  (02 June 2021)

FLOOD 2021

Dam flood Assam NEEPCO clarifies about water releases from Ranganadi HEP. https://nenow.in/north-east-news/assam/assam-neepco-issues-clarification-over-release-of-excess-waters-from-ranganadi-dam.html  (06 June 2021)

NEEPCO temporarily stopped the discharge of excess water from Ranganadi HEP on June 9, 2021. NEEPCO had been continuously releasing the excess water from the catchment area of RHEP, located at Yazali in Arunachal Pradesh, since June 5.

During the second time of the year, while discharging the water, RHEP authority discharged 605.25 cumecs of excess water from the dam through the RHEP Radial Gate till 5.00 pm on June 5, rapid surge of which swept away the Gobarishali and Panch Noi area connecting bamboo bridge affecting the communication of the people living in these two areas. The people living under larger Panch Noi area are still water trapped due to the breach of the bamboo bridge and are facing many problems. https://www.sentinelassam.com/north-east-india-news/assam-news/neepco-temporarily-stopped-discharge-of-excess-water-from-ranganadi-dam-542080  (10 June 2021)

Gujarat 4 young men drown and die in Narmada river in Kabirwad, Bharuch on June 10, “due to the discharge from Sardar Sarovar Dam and high tide in the sea”. https://indianexpress.com/article/india/four-youths-drown-in-narmada-river-in-bharuch-7355092/  (12 June 2021)

Telangana Early floodflow into Jurala About 4.5 tmcft water has reached Jurala since June 1 to June 9 evening. Early flood into the Jurala project this monsoon season has not only improved the water storage in it to near full reservoir (FRL) level but has also allowed Telangana State Power Generation Corporation Ltd (TS-Genco) to commence power generation (at 6X39 MW Jurala HEP) from June 9 afternoon (this was possibly only on June 14 in 2020) when water storage in the reservoir crossed 9 TMC out of live storage of 9.66 TMC and allowed irrigation authorities to start water release/lifting to several systems based on the reservoir. https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/early-flood-into-jurala-allows-power-generation-release-of-water-to-canals/article34772440.ece  (09 June 2021) 

Bihar Farmers protest flood embankments to protect livelihoods Activists opposing the project say that the nearly 4,000 kilometres of mud, sand and stone wall already enclosing Bihar’s rivers to protect the adjacent areas from flooding is not helping the people. In the early 1950s, the total length of the embankment was 160 kilometres, and 2.5 million hectares were considered flood prone. After adding more flood protection, the flood prone area has increased to 6.8 million hectares, making Bihar the most flood affected state in India. Dinesh Mishra, a renowned river expert in Bihar, explained that the mud walls, which regularly breach at dozens of places, “[help those with] vested interests, [but] certainly not the people”.  https://www.thethirdpole.net/en/livelihoods/bihar-farmers-protest-bagmati-river-embankments/  (10 June 2021)

LANDSLIDES

Uttarakhand गंगोत्री हाईवे सुनगर के पास दूसरे दिन भी बंद रहा गंगोत्री राष्ट्रीय राजमार्ग दूसरे दिन भी सुनगर के पास बंद रहा है। सोमवार (June 7) तड़के बिना बारिश गंगोत्री हाईपवे पर सुनगर के पास भारी भूस्खलन हो गया। यहां हाईवे को मंगलवार (June 8) शाम तक नहीं खोला जा सका था। बीआरओ की टीम और मशीनें लगातार हाईवे पर आई चट्टानों और मलबे को हटाने के काम में जुटी हैं। रुक-रुक कर मलबा आने से हाईवे खोलने के दिक्कतें आ रही हैं। गंगोत्री हाईवे बंद होने की वजह से लोगों को भारी परेशानी हो रही है। भूस्खलन क्षेत्र के दोनों तरफ वाहनों की लाइन लगी है। आवश्यक वस्तुओं की आपूर्ति भी प्रभावित हुई है। https://www.livehindustan.com/uttarakhand/uttarkashi/story-gangotri-highway-remained-closed-for-the-second-day-near-sunagar-4103108.html  (08 June 2021)

बृहस्पतिवार (May 7) सुबह करीब पांच बजे सुनगर एवं गंगनानी के बीच भारी भूस्खलन होने से गंगोत्री हाईवे अवरुद्ध हो गया। भूस्खलन में आए भारी बोल्डरों को तोड़ने के लिए बीआरओ को भारी मशक्कत करनी पड़ रही है। https://www.amarujala.com/dehradun/gangotri-highway-blocked-after-landslide-today  (07 May 2021)

A fresh landslide occurred at Totaghati on Rishikesh-Badrinath National Highway that has been blocked for the past six days after a 50m stretch of road caved in near Radang bend on May 20. https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/dehradun/landslide-occurs-at-totaghati-badrinath-highway-blocked-for-6th-day/articleshow/82952886.cms  (26 May 2021)

Mizoram 4 children killed in massive landslide In a tragic incident, as many as four children were killed, while two others were injured due to a devastating landslide that swept away a building in Aizawl. As per reports, the incident had occurred on Friday (June 11) night at Thuampui neighbourhood situated under Bawngkawn police station area in the northeastern part of Aizawl. https://www.pratidintime.com/mizoram-4-children-killed-in-massive-landslip/  (12 June 2021)

CLOUD BURSTS

Uttarakhand अल्मोड़ा: बिनसर मंदिर में भारी बारिश अल्मोड़ा जिले के बिनसर में बारिश ने भारी तबाही मचाई है। बिनसर इलाके में गुरुवार (June 11) को बादल फटने के बाद स्वर्गाश्रम महादेव मंदिर में हर तरफ पानी ही पानी नजर आया। मंदिर से लगे गदेरे (पहाड़ी नाली या छोटी नदी) में पानी का ऐसा सैलाब आया कि मंदिर की आसपास की सभी चीजों को अपने साथ बहा ले गया। इससे अफरा-तफरी मच गई। https://navbharattimes.indiatimes.com/state/uttarakhand/other-cities/almora-cloudburst-like-situation-in-binsar-mahadev-temple-everything-submerged-in-water/videoshow/83410042.cms  (11 June 2021)

जानकारी के अनुसार क्षेत्र में सुबह से अपराह्न तक लगातार तेज बारिश का सिलसिला चला। सौनी, बिनसर क्षेत्र में दोपहर लगभग 11.45 बजे अतिवृष्टि से बादल फटने जैसे हालात पैदा हो गए। प्रसिद्ध स्वर्गाश्रम बिनसर महादेव मंदिर से लगा गधेरा ऊफान में आ गया। गधेरे के अलावा ऊपरी क्षेत्र से भी मंदिर परिसर में पानी आने लगा। देखते ही देखते मंदिर परिसर में बाढ़ की स्थिति बन गई और पूरे परिसर में ऊफान के साथ पानी बहने लगा।  https://www.livehindustan.com/uttarakhand/almora/story-cloudburst-like-situation-in-binsar-area-of-ranikhet-temple-complex-submerged-in-water-4110543.html  (11 June 2021)

देहरादून में फटा बादल, भारी नुकसान की आशंका देहरादून के मालदेवता क्षेत्र में बुधवार (June 9) रात बारिश ने भारी तबाही मचाई है. मालदेवता जंक्शन के पास बादल फटने से भारी मलबा सड़क पर आ गया. इससे पीपीसीएल और द्वारा को जाने वाली सड़कें पूरी तरह बंद हो गई. वहीं देहरादून के रायपुर से मालदेवता को जाने वाले मार्ग पर भी मलबा और बारिश का पानी ने कुछ घरों, होटल, ढाबों और खेतों को नुकसान पहुंचाया है. मालदेवता जंक्शन के पास भारी मलबा आने से आवाजाही पूरी तरह से बंद हो गई है. जिससे क्षेत्र के लोगों को भारी मुश्किलें उठानी पड़ रही है. https://react.etvbharat.com/hindi/bihar/bharat/cloud-burst-in-uttarakhand-maldevta/na20210610120248113  (10 June 2021)

देहरादून के मालदेवता में लगातार बारिश की वजह से सड़क कटिंग का पूरा मलबा नीचे मुख्य सड़क पर आ गया। इससे वहां रह रहे लोगों के घरों में मलबा घुस गया। यहां लगातार बारिश की वजह से ढोल गांव में अचानक मलबा गया जिस वजह से रोड पूरी तरह ब्लॉक हो गई। मलवा आने की वजह से दूसरे गांव यानी सत्यों, क्यारा और द्वारा गांव जाने के लिए रास्ता भी बंद हो गया है। अब तक मिली जानकारी के मुताबिक यहां बैठा गांव के लिए सड़क का निर्माण हो रहा है। बीती रात लगातार बारिश के चलते यह मलबा मुख्य सड़क पर आ गया और पूरे गांव में फैल गया। https://www.rajyasameeksha.com/uttarakhand/17734-debris-in-dehradun-maldevta  (10 June 2021)

Following heavy rainfall in Dehradun, road muck washed away in Maaldevta area Mussoorie. https://www.facebook.com/vijayrawat84/videos/480151896376724/ Only few days back residents had objected to excessive mining in a local stream fearing muck deluge. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cb6AJwis5Gw  (09 June 2021)

लगातार हो रही बारिश के बीच मंदाकिनी का जलस्तर बढ़ गया है। यहां कई वाहन बीच धारा में फंस गए हैं। इसकी वजह से लोगों में भी दहशत का माहौल है। लगातार हो रही बारिश की वजह से आम जनजीवन प्रभावित हुआ है। https://navbharattimes.indiatimes.com/state/uttarakhand/other-cities/uttarakhand-me-mandakini-me-fans-gyi-gaadiyan/videoshow/82808478.cms  (20 May 2021)

One more cloud brust incident reported in Narkota area of Rudraprayag. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U_dmRZSOJks  (12 June 2021)

Badrinatha highway blocked following heavy rainfall and landslide near Helang Gulabkoti. Flash flood spell reported in Rishiganga causing panic among villagers.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DRw0pfwVH5k  (12 June 2021)

Video report of cloud burst in Bhalya village under Bin block of Pithoragarh. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YpYAuz2q2MY  (12 June 2021)

Himachal Pradesh चंबा में बादल फटा, ऊना में गिरे ओले, कांगड़ा भी हुआ पानी-पानी गुरुवार (June 10) शाम को चम्बा की लेच पंचायत में बादल फटा. इस वजह से दो नालों का जलस्तर बढ़ गया और मलबा लोगों के घरों में घुस गया. खेतों में मलबा और पानी घुसने से मक्की की फसल बर्बाद हो गई है. गांव के पेयजल के सोर्स मलबे की वजह से प्रभावित हुए हैं और सेब के बगीचों को भी नुकसान हुआ है. हालांकि, जानी नुकसान की कोई खबर नहीं है.  https://hindi.news18.com/news/himachal-pradesh/shimla-weather-report-in-himachal-cloud-burst-in-chamba-hail-storm-in-una-heavy-rain-alert-in-himachal-hpvk-3617571.html  (11 June 2021)

ENVIRONMENT GOVERNANCE

Uttarakhand Van Gujjars: People of the forest or nowhere? The Van Gujjar community is being slowly displaced to protect the Rajaji National Park, while development projects eat their way through the forest.

While relocation outside the National Park has brought its perks for certain community members, the process has been chaotic and unlawful, often violating their rights over the forest land.

Fragmented forests have not only disrupted migratory routes of Van Gujjars but also of wild animals that get road-killed, or raid farmlands bordering the forest, raising problems for farmers. https://india.mongabay.com/2021/05/van-gujjars-people-of-the-forest-or-nowhere/  (28 May 2021)

Western Ghats Newly described scorpion species Since March 2020, scientists from the Institute of Natural History Education and Research (INHER), Pune have described seven new species of scorpions from the Western Ghats – six from the Sahyadris in Maharashtra and one from the southern Western Ghats near Bengaluru. These discoveries highlight the need for dedicated surveys and integrated taxonomic research on scorpions to be able to effectively conserve them. https://india.mongabay.com/2021/05/newly-described-scorpion-species-from-western-ghats-highlight-need-for-more-research-and-conservation/  (18 May 2021)

Report India has lost 90% of area under four biodiversity hotspots Biodiversity in India: Over 90% of the area under the biodiversity hotspots in India have been lost. India has four biodiversity hotspots and 90% of this area has been lost, according to the Centre for Science and Environment’s (CSE) new report entitled ‘State of India’s Environment in Figures 2021’. As per the data compiled in the report, the Indo-Burma hotspot is the worst affected and has lost 95% of its vegetation area, going from 23.73 lakh sq km to 1.18 lakh sq km. Another worrying aspect is that in these four hotspots, 25 species have also become extinct. https://www.financialexpress.com/lifestyle/science/biodiversity-loss-india-has-lost-90-of-area-under-four-biodiversity-hotspots-25-species-extinct-finds-study/2267618/  (08 June 2021)

Study Menstrual waste disposal adding to environmental crisis About 12.3 billion or 113,000 tonnes of used sanitary pads are dumped in landfills in India every year, adding to the already existing plastic pollution in the country, shares a new study titled ‘Menstrual Products and their Disposal’.

Released by the environmental group Toxics Link, the study has also raised serious concerns on improper disposal methods and non-segregation of menstrual waste from household waste, which leads to unhygienic working conditions for waste workers, and posing the risk of infectious diseases among them. https://www.newindianexpress.com/nation/2021/jun/03/menstrual-waste-disposal-adding-to-indias-environmental-crisis-study-2311185.html  (03 June 2021)

Centre Allocates ₹ 40,700 Cr For Waste Management In Villages Over ₹ 40,700 crore have been allocated to help over two lakh villages achieve solid and liquid waste management (SLWM) under the Swacch Bharat Mission (Grameen), the Jal Shakti Ministry said on Tuesday (June 8). While the Centre will spend around ₹ 14,000 crore, states will spend over ₹ 8,300 crore and the remaining funds will come from others sources, it said. Minister of State for Jal Shakti Rattan Lal Kataria had on Monday (June 7) reviewed the progress of SWB(G). https://www.ndtv.com/india-news/centre-allocates-rs-40-700-crore-for-waste-management-in-villages-under-swacch-bharat-mission-2459346  (08 June 2021)

Green Energy firms plan to move SC to seek revision of endangered bird order Renewable energy companies are set to seek a revision of the Supreme Court order from April earlier this year for the undergrounding of power lines in Gujarat and Rajasthan to protect the habitat of the critically endangered Great Indian Bustard, said people aware of the matter. https://energy.economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/renewable/green-energy-firms-plan-to-move-supreme-court-to-seek-revision-of-endangered-bird-order/83358229  (09 June 2021)

SOUTH ASIA

Sustainability of Brahmaputra basin needs transboundary cooperation True, but how do we achieve it? https://india.mongabay.com/2021/06/sustainability-of-brahmaputra-basin-needs-transboundary-cooperation/  (08 June 2021)

The study, Sustainable Management Options for Healthy Rivers in South Asia: The Case of Brahmaputra published in the journal Sustainability, says that an integrated management mechanism among the Brahmaputra basin countries with the objective of equitable benefit sharing, disaster risk management, and resilience building is needed for a durable future of the Brahmaputra river and its communities. The researchers from ICIMOD and Guwahati-based NGO Aaranyak said that ensuring riverine connectivity and ecological health of the river by keeping the river free-flowing as far as possible should be one of the top priorities in a multilateral, collaborative, basin-wide co-management strategy. https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/guwahati/integrated-mgmt-mechanism-among-brahmaputra-basin-countries-needed-study/articleshow/83478110.cms  (13 June 2021)

Nepal NEFEJ opposes lifting of ban on export of construction material Nepal Forum of Environmental Journalists (NEFEJ) has opposed the government announcement on lifting the ban on export of construction material like stone, gravel and sand in the name of reducing the trade deficit.

The government in its budget for the fiscal year 2078/79 released through ordinance on May 29 said that the export of stone, gravel and sand would be permitted after the environmental impact assessment.

NEFEJ believes that this decision is environmentally, economically and socially not acceptable, as it would jeopardize the future of already endangered Chure hill region and is a step towards the desertification of this fragile mountain region. It has already been proved that illegal mining in the past years have posed a grave threat on the conservation of Chure region and the decision to lifting the ban would further damage this region. https://nefej.org.np/1681/  (01 June 2021)

Plan to export pebbles; sand ‘at the cost of Chure conservation’ The Chure region had been bearing the brunt of relentless mining of sand, pebbles and boulders from its rivers and hills and their export to India which, according to experts, has caused natural disasters like floods and landslides. The decision has been criticised widely by both opposition parties and environmentalists who say that doing so would cause unimaginable environmental degradation, leading to water shortages and habitat loss. https://english.onlinekhabar.com/explained-nepals-plan-to-export-pebbles-and-sand-at-the-cost-of-chure-conservation.html  (03 June 2021)

Sand mining in the valley was not an issue until it resulted in the collapse of a major bridge over the Bagmati connecting Kathmandu and Lalitpur at Thapathali in the late 1980s. The next major impact was seen when the deepening of the Bagmati River due to sand mining caused river bank failures, which threatened newly built houses along the banks. Several buildings at Shanti Basti of Dhobighat developed cracks or became tilted, requiring major maintenance. Some of the houses had to be rebuilt completely. With this, the environmental cost of sand mining gradually began to emerge, making mining in the rivers further contentious. Local authorities imposed a complete ban on river sand mining. https://kathmandupost.com/opinion/2018/10/12/its-not-just-sand  (12 Oct. 2018)

ASIA

MEKONG Cambodia Tonle Sap fish catch declines due to nature; human harm The Tonle Sap, which contributed over half the fish produced in Cambodia, is now faced with a serious threat in fish catch due to loss of flooded forest, climate change, upstream dams and illegal fishing activities.

Fisheries Action Coalition Team (FACT)’s Tonle Sap project coordinator Minh Bunly told Khmer Times that the Tonle Sap lake was known to support the thriving fishing industry but with the threats it faces now, it is affecting the production of freshwater fish.

“The construction of large hydropower dams and reservoirs among others is affecting water flow, thus threatening the sensitive ecosystems downstream, especially Tonle Sap river, the Tonle Sap Lake and its floodplain. Even the water flow according to the season is affected,” he added. https://www.khmertimeskh.com/50865777/tonle-sap-fish-catch-declines-due-to-nature-and-human-harm/  (01 June 2021)

700 families in floating houses ordered out in 7 days Some 700 families living in floating houses in Phnom Penh’s Tonle Sap river have been given seven days by the Phnom Penh City Hall to move out or legal action will be initiated. The order was issued yesterday with City Hall announcing that they were going to dismantle or relocate the floating houses, fish farms, and boathouses or any other unregulated and illegal structures on the river surface. In the notification dated June 2, City Hall has asked everyone on the river surface to move out immediately as per the announcement. https://www.khmertimeskh.com/50867149/ordered-to-move-700-families-in-floating-houses-ordered-out-in-seven-days  (03 June 2021)

THE REST OF THE WORLD

USA Severe drought in California. The lake behind the Oroville dam could reach its historical lowest level by August. https://floridanewstimes.com/drought-ravages-californias-reservoirs-ahead-of-hot-summer/276750/   (07 June 2021)

Crews continue monitoring North Mississippi dam for possible breach Crews are still monitoring a dam in a North Mississippi neighborhood to make sure it doesn’t breach from flooding. People who live in the Tara Estates, just north of Oxford, are back in their homes as of Thursday morning but are still being cautious. They were asked to evacuate Wednesday when it looked like the lake and dam surrounding it could overflow. Fire crews quickly started pumping water out of the lake to lower water levels to prevent a breach. State leaders say a pipe that controlled the water level failed due to old age. “Once that happens it can get into uncontrolled release pretty quickly and wash away the interior of the dam leading to a dam failure,” said Willie McKercher with the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality Dam Safety Division.  https://www.wmcactionnews5.com/2021/06/10/crews-continue-monitoring-north-mississippi-dam-possible-breach/  (10 June 2021)

Sinkhole at Mexico farm swallows more land, eats at house A large sinkhole that appeared in late May in a farm in central Mexico has already grown larger than a football field authorities say it is likely to continue expanding. The sinkhole is now over 400 feet (125 meters) across and has begun swallowing a house. The Mexican government has sent in soldiers to keep people 2,000 feet (600 meters) away from the edge of the hole, which is 50 feet (15 meters) deep.

Some residents believe the sinkhole is the result of excessive groundwater extraction by factories or a water bottling plant in the area. But the bottom of the hole is filled with water that appears to have strong currents, and the national civil defense office said experts think it was caused by something like an underground river. “It is highly probable that the origin is associated with the presence of subterranean water flows,” the office said. https://indianexpress.com/article/world/mexico-sinkhole-house-zacatapec-7353231/  (10 June 2021)

Microseismic monitoring technique for dams; reservoirs In conclusion, the microseismic monitoring system should ideally be conceived prior to the filling of the reservoir, to provide enough data to build a history regarding local seismicity, and should also consider the dam body, as it can be employed as a monitoring technique for its integrity. https://www.waterpowermagazine.com/features/featuremicroseismic-monitoring-technique-for-dams-and-reservoirs-8807993/  (09 June 2021)  

Scientists using drones to lower the risk of GLOF The research will enhance the reliability of predictive models to identify potential glacial lake flood hazards. It will also identify areas where remediation work, such as the building of additional outlet channels or armoured barriers, is most needed to strengthen the moraine. https://www.tribuneindia.com/news/schools/how-scientists-are-using-drones-to-lower-the-risk-of-catastrophic-flooding-from-large-glacial-lakes-264832  (07 June 2021)

Compiled by SANDRP (ht.sandrp@gmail.com)

Also see: DRP News Bulletin 07 June 2021 & DRP News Bulletin 31 May 2021  

Follow us on: www.facebook.com/sandrp.in; https://twitter.com/Indian_Rivers      

4 thoughts on “DRP NB 14 June 2021: IPCC-IPBES Scientists: Biodiversity protection & climate change action HAVE TO work together

  1. Nirmala Gouda’s article My mother My River touched me so deeply, brought tears in my eyes. I am from Benaras, now living in Bengal. but so many childhood memories are very closely related to The Ganga and its Ghats. My mother used to take me and my sister when we were just kids, to the River and tried to teach us how to swim. Mama left us in 2017. Covid snatched away my sister last month. But the River was there. when I see photographs and hear from others-what they have done to the Ghats…the grief is beyond any description. You Know, I follow your Journal from the very beginning and sometimes feel like writing about my view and experiences. But the problem is that I canno’t write good English, and I know that.

    Keep up because many readers like me wait eagerly for your writings.

    Love and Regards

    Like

    1. Many thanks, Joya ji.
      So lovely and touching that you shared your thoughts.
      Let me tell you are wrong in one aspect: Your English is perfect. Plz keep writing and sharing. I would love to hear your thoughts.
      Himanshu

      Like

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