Ganga drying up in summers due to groundwater depletion: Study

Ganga, the 2,600-km-long trans-boundary river of Asia, has witnessed “unprecedented low levels of water in several lower reaches” in the last few summer seasons, a study undertaken by a professor of IIT-Kharagpur.

The study, published recently in Scientific Reports magazine by Nature Publishing Group, used a combination of satellite images of groundwater levels of Ganga, numerical simulations and chemical analyses to draw the conclusion, a statement issued by IIT-Kharagpur.

In the forthcoming summers, for the next 30 years, groundwater contribution to river Ganga will continue decreasing, it observed.

The research was carried out under the IIT-KGP Science and Heritage Initiative (SANDHI) Initiative, which focuses on “river systems and its relationship with the settlement system”.

The study which is of interest to the hydrology, global change community, and policymakers, can help the general public understand the wider implications of groundwater depletion, Joy Sen, the coordinator of the SANDHI, explained.

The research brings out the scientific reasons for the decreased flows of the river Ganga, especially in the lower reaches, said.

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