Nagaland: Springshed development project to cover 100 villages
Work for Phase II covering 64 villages in 11 districts will commence in July
Dimapur, June 28 (EMN): With climate change disrupting the groundwater and affecting springs discharge in the Himalayan region, a multi-stakeholder consortium has taken up an initiative on springshed development in 100 villages in Nagaland state for water security. The pilot project will be implemented in two phases.
Springshed development enhances rainfall infiltration into the ground thus increasing the recharge capability of spring aquifers (a body of permeable rock which can contain or transmit groundwater), increase biomass production, reduce drudgery especially for women and children and sustain the local ecosystem, according to an update from Aoinla, Project Associate of North East Initiative Development Agency (NEIDA).
The spring rejuvenation activities under phase-I have covered 41 springs in 36 villages across nine districts of the state. Plantation and civil works in spring recharge areas are nearing completion in all the selected villages with active participation of village community members, informed the update.
It went on to say that the springs were selected after conducting in-depth social and technical feasibility studies which has resulted in preparation of detail technical reports including hydrogeological mappings of springs. These studies are undertaken by trained para-hydrogeologists from the Land Resource department (LRD) and data collectors have been selected and trained in 36 villages by LRD to collect rainfall data, spring discharge and in-situ water quality testing on a regular basis to assess the performance of the springs over the next 24 months.
The work for Phase II covering the remaining 64 villages in 11 districts will commence in July. On successful completion of this pilot phase, the vision of this initiative is to implement spring rejuvenation activities across all the villages in the state, informed the update.
According to NITI Aayog Report (2018), climate change in the form of rising temperature, erratic rainfall and rainfall intensity are impacting mountain aquifer systems on springs in the Himalayas. In Nagaland, where groundwater in the form of springs are the lifeline of the communities, there are increasing evidence of springs discharge decreasing resulting in drying up of springs or springs becoming seasonal leading to acute shortage of water particularly during the winter months. This calls for the need to recharge groundwater and avoid possible water crisis in the state.
Through springshed management based on the concept aquifer-based participatory springshed management, a multi-stakeholder consortium comprising of departments of Land Resources, Rural Development, Government of Nagaland, North East Initiative Development Agency (NEIDA), Tata Trusts, ACWADAM and People Science Institute (PSI) are working together to regenerate and recharge mountain aquifers for drinking water security thereby increasing the state populations’ resilience to climate variability and change, according to the update.