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    Kashmir80 percent Dal Lake water is unclean: Study

    80 percent Dal Lake water is unclean: Study


    80 percent Dal Lake water is unclean: Study

    NL Correspondent

    SRINAGAR: The famed water body of , Dal Lake is facing severe degradation due to multiple pressures from unplanned urbanization whose only ‘20 percent water is now relatively clean'.

    This has been stated in a recent on Dal Lake conducted by Dr Shakil Ahmad Romshoo, head of the Earth Sciences Department at Kashmir University.

    “32% of the lake falls under severe degradation, 48% under medium degradation while as 20% of the lake waters are relatively clean,” the study says titled as ‘The long-term biophysical and demographic changes in Dal Lake'.

    The lake which has shrunk from 31 to 24 square km from 1859 to 2014 faces multiple pressures from the unplanned urbanization, high population growth, nutrient load from intensive agriculture and , it says.

    The study has analyzed the long-term biophysical and demographic changes in Dal Lake. “7 important water quality parameters from 82 well distributed sites across the lake were analysed and compared with the past data to determine the historical changes in the water quality from 1971-2014. The changes in the LULC and demography have adversely affected the pollution status of this pristine lake,” Dr Romshoo states in the research.

    The study attributed the degradation of the Dal Lake to increased load of nutrients –mostly nitrogen and phosphorus – which act as fertilisers for weed growth in it.

    The study also reveals that the built-up area within the lake has increased by 217 per cent since 1962, which together with the changes in the population and settlements, have led to the high discharge of untreated nutrient-rich sewage into the lake. “Similarly the expansion of floating gardens within the lake and agriculture lands in the catchment have contributed to the increased nutrient load into the lake due to the increasing use of fertilizers. The information about the existing land cover, demography and water quality was integrated and analyzed in GIS to identify the trophic status of the lake.”

    The study further said, “Ortho-phosphate phosphorous concentration has increased from 16.75µgL-1 in 1977 to 45.78µgL-1 in 2014 and that of the nitrate-nitrogen from 365µgL-1 to 557µgL-1, indicating nutrient enrichment of the lake over the years.”

    Dr Romshoo said he did the research that was funded by the ISRO. “The research was conducted by me alone for the academics purpose to help the students how the Dal Lake water has degraded over the years,” he added.

    The Northlines is an independent source on the Web for news, facts and figures relating to Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh and its neighbourhood.

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