Thiruvananthapuram: Relentless depletion of
ground water is posing a serious environmental threat to
Kerala, a minister said on Thursday.
A 28 per cent decrease had been registered in the current
year water level in wells across the state as compared to last
year, Water Resource Minister N K Premachandran said during a
conservation workshop by state ground water department here.
"In the past, we used to depend more on surface water
sources like rivers, ponds and streams. But, with depletion of
water bodies due to extreme summer and other factors, we have
shifted our focus to ground water," he said.
The situation, if not reversed through conservation
measures, would lead to collapse of entire agriculture sector
and drinking water supply system of the state in near future,
Premachandran said water level in the depletion-prone
areas should be identified and adequate steps taken to sustain
the ground water storage.
"Conscious efforts are required to sustain and rejuvenate
water bodies and its result should be extended to drinking
water supply and agriculture sector. Tamil Nadu could be taken
as a role model for such initiatives".
Existing Ground Water Regulation Act should be amended
taking current situation into account to check uncontrolled
and illegal extraction, the minister said.
Rackets that thrive by commercial exploitation of water
resources were active in the state and the laws should be
strong enough to crack them down, he added.