Chemical Pollution

Featured Articles
December 6, 2019 A report by the India Rivers Forum highlights the need to focus further than the main stem of the Ganga river.
Distant snow clad mountains, the smaller hills and the Ganga river (Image: Srimoyee Banerjee, Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 4.0)
December 2, 2019 Water stewardship is an approach predicated on the concept that water is a shared resource and so water risks are also shared risks that everyone in a catchment will face
Picture credit: Romit Sen
November 21, 2019 A report by NIUA brings to light the chinks in Jaipur's sewage system and suggests some solutions.
Routine check done by the sewage treatment plant staff in Delawas, Jaipur. The plant is part of the ADB best practices projects list. (Image: Asian Development Bank, Flickr Commons)
November 21, 2019 Excessive and unregulated pesticide use has not only poisoned the soil, water and environment in villages in Punjab’s Malwa region – it has also increased health risks for the people.
Farmer spraying pesticide (Source: Wikimedia Commons)
November 13, 2019 Policy matters this week
A domestic RO water purifier
November 13, 2019 News this week
A cyclonic storm that hit India in 2016. (Source: IWP Flickr photos)
Holy waters, unholy outcomes!
A study found that mass bathing events in the Kshipra river not only led to high pollution, but also to the presence of multidrug resistant pathogenic bacteria in its waters, posing a risk to health. Aarti Kelkar Khambete posted 11 months ago

Rivers are revered and considered holy since times immemorial in India and mass bathing in some rivers is an age-old ritual. A holy dip and a holy sip of the river waters are considered to be a highly purifying. But is the dip really cleansing at all when almost all the rivers in India are known to be highly polluted?

A priest offers water to the sun at Ramghat on the Kshipra river at Simhastha (Image Source: Makarand Purohit)
Locals struggle with WASH issues post-Amphan
Cyclone Amphan wreaks havoc in the Sunderbans at a time when the country was already battling a large spread of Covid-19. Amita Bhaduri posted 11 months 1 week ago

UN’s recognition of safe and clean drinking water and sanitation as a human right recently hit a decade and this makes us ponder even more about the situation in the Sundarbans after the Amphan cyclone. The destruction caused by Amphan in the Sundarbans poses a massive threat to the very right to safe and clean drinking water and sanitation of the people living there.

Having no source of water is proving to be extremely difficult for the people living in the Sundarbans. (Image: WaterAid, Subhrajit Sen)
Groundwater extraction: NGT gets strict with commercial entities
Policy matters this week Swati Bansal posted 11 months 2 weeks ago

NGT bans granting general permissions for groundwater extraction to commercial entities

NGT gets strict with commercial entities (Source: IWP Flickr album)
A third of world’s children poisoned by lead: UNICEF
Urgent action needed to abolish dangerous practices including the informal recycling of lead acid batteries. Amita Bhaduri posted 11 months 3 weeks ago

Around 1 in 3 children – up to 800 million globally – have blood lead levels at or above 5 micrograms per decilitre (µg/dL), a level that the World Health Organization and the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have stated requires global and regional interventions.

Two girls recycle metal from used batteries at a workshop in Dhaka, Bangladesh (Image: UNICEF/Naser Siddique)
Reinventing waste management during Covid-19
There is an urgent need to revamp our municipal waste management systems. Amita Bhaduri posted 1 year ago

India stares at a Covid-19 induced waste management crisis and there is a need to strengthen waste management services. An important sanitary barrier to prevent the dissemination of illnesses and diseases, waste management’s impact on the world’s healthcare systems, and the economy are significant.

A lab technician discarding disposable gloves (Image: CDC/Kimberly Smith, Christine Ford acquired from Public Health Image Library)
Water fleas can warn of water pollution!
Water fleas, tiny organisms found in water can help save rivers! Read this interview with freshwater biologist, Dr Sameer Padhye, to know how. Aarti Kelkar Khambete posted 1 year ago

Water fleas are small crustaceans widely found in varied aquatic habitats. They are very sensitive to changes in the water quality of water bodies such as rivers and streams that they inhabit.

Water fleas can warn of water pollution (Image Source: Sameer Padhye)
Covid-19 threatens to worsen India's water crisis
Regulations for water use, innovation for treating antimicrobial resistance and monitoring of infected plastic leakage needs to be prioritised to curtail the water crisis. Amita Bhaduri posted 1 year 2 months ago

While the world has got a reprieve from pollution with emerging wildlife, cleaner air and clearer water bodies during lockdown, Covid-19 might actually be worsening the present water crisis in an inconspicuous manner. The world is still developing more clarity on safeguards that can prevent transmission, treatment and post treatment complications.

Marine litter. Plastic bottles on a beach. (Image: Bo Eide, Flickr Commons; CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Global infections from water poised to rise with climate change
As climate change handshakes water contamination, we pass by very much uncertain times. Aarti Kelkar Khambete posted 1 year 3 months ago

Climate change triggered heat waves threaten water availability

Ninjallama rues as she remembers, " It was a terrible summer. The heat wave was killing. Three people died in my village. People with skeletal fluorosis suffered .. "

Water contamination, a growing concern (Image Source: IWP Flickr photos)
Gearing to overcome water quality woes
A workshop highlights the need to give a boost to affordable household water treatment and storage technologies. Amita Bhaduri posted 1 year 3 months ago

India has the most people in the world without access to safe drinking water (133.9 million). Many studies indicate that poor and marginalized populations are the worst affected from waterborne diseases resulting from the consumption of contaminated water.

HWTS solutions are best suited for villages (Image: WaterAid)