Water-stress study: India among high-risk nations

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India among high water-stress nations
New Delhi, Dec 14: India will face acute water shortage in future, says the first-ever global water stress rankings by World Resource Institute.

India is at 41st position in a list of 181 countries and is among second high risk nations. The study also says that 37% countries assessed by it experience high baseline water stress, reports Times of India.

37 countries include Singapore, Kuwait, Oman and Israel.

What is baseline water stress

The baseline water stress measures how much water is used up every year from rivers, streams, and aquifers for domestic, agricultural, and industrial uses. Scores above 4 on a scale of 0-5 indicate that, for the average water user, more than 80% of the water available is withdrawn annually.

India's baseline water stress is at 3.6, which means the country uses between 40% and 80% of the water available annually.

The situation becomes worse during summer, says the report. During summer, the demand for water is extremely high that India overexploits both surface and ground water.

Water scarcity is set ti affect GDP growth, energy production and social security, indicates the report.

For example, recent droughts threatened GDP growth in the United States and monsoon floods killed hundreds and displaced thousands in India. The increased competition for water in China may impact energy production.

There is hope

The report ends on an optimistic note.
It cites the example of Singapore, which has the highest water stress ranking of 5 and has no freshwater lakes or aquifers. Nevertheless, Singapore is considered as an exceptional water manager.

To meet its increasing water demands, the country invests heavily in technology, international agreements, and responsible management.

Around 20% of Singapore's water needs is mostly met through advanced rainwater capture systems. The country imports 40% from Malaysia, grey water reuse adds 30%, and desalination produces the remaining 10% of the supply to meet the country's total demand.

Singapore-example can lead the way for other countries too.

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