Amaravati may be on the banks of Krishna but its ground water is highly polluted !!

amaravati ground water pollutionThe upcoming capital city of Amaravati is likely to face a severe shortage of potable water. Though the city will come up on the right bank of the river Krishna, the groundwater in the designated capital area is highly polluted.Indiscriminate use of chemical fertilisers and pesticides in horticultural and agricultural crops spread over 30,000 acres for decades has turned the groundwater either saline or alkaline. Amaravati is a green field capital city and it will be built after dismantling agricultural and horticultural crops.

A joint research study by Andhra University , Indian Institute of Remote Sensing and KL University has revealed that the groundwater in the villages that fall under the capital city contain pollution indicators like total dissolved solids (TDS), nitrates and fluorides beyond the maximum limit prescribed by the Bureau of Indian Standards. The researchers al so found high concentration of alkalinity , which ranged between 200 mg per litre to 400 mg per litre. The team comprising MJ Ratnakanth Babu, IC Das, G Jaisankar and others also noticed that the concentration of chloride in most of the villages under Tadepalli mandal exceeded the BIS limit of 250 mg per litre. Areas like Undavalli and Penumaka showed TDS above 2,000 mg per litre.

Residues of chemical pesticides and fertilisers have leached into the groundwater table over the decades causing high levels of pollution. Domestic, industrial and agricultural wastes have also damaged the groundwater. Though river Krishna flows in the vicinity , the new capital will have to depend heavily on the groundwater table to meet the needs of the projected population growth.The team has also found that the water table is contaminated by microorganisms too.

The water quality index studies showed that the groundwater in nine villages of Tadepalli mandal is of poor quality and unfit for domestic use. Two villages had `very poor’ water quality . The quality of groundwater in several villages under Mangalagiri and Tullur mandals is also not fit for human consumption.

Source: Times of India, Hyderabad edition

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