Integrated study on hydrochemistry and management of spring water resources: A case study from indian central Himalayas

Author(s): B.K.Joshi

The study aims to evaluate the affect of different season and eco-biological interferences on the water yield and water quality parameters of the representative springs of eight (8) different resorting zone in theAlmora-Binsar area of Indian central Himalayas.Monitoring for the water yield and water quality parameters was done in three main seasons i.e. winter (January), summer (June) and monsoon (August) of 2000, 2001 and 2002. The averages of standard deviation for measured parameters were calculated. These samples were analyzed for pH, electrical conductivity (EC), dissolve oxygen, Ca2+, Mg2+, Na+, Cl-, NO3 -, SO4 2- and E.coli. In the study, it appeared that there was a marginal difference between the water yield in the three consecutive seasons, however it remains significant among the springs. The spring water chemistry shows that the forest area having sparse population had lower EC, cationic and anionic concentration and is safe for drinking purposes, but the springs in irrigated land and higher population surrounding bear higher EC, lowdissolved oxygen concentration and higher NO3 -make it unsuitable for drinking. Further the high E. coli presence in the springs of degraded forest to highly resorted area (S3 to S8) was becomes vulnerable to water borne diseases. The study indicated that the unmanaged drains, very poor and old pattern of sewage probably raise the Na+, Cl-, NO3 - and SO4 2- concentration in the spring water, as compared to the agriculture and forest locating springs. The springs with settlements are badly managed and pose a great threat for the longevity and quality of these water bodies in the region. This study suggests that the ways of the participatorymanagementmight be helpful tominimize the biotic pressure in these spring’s catchment areas.

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