South Asia has 23.7% of the global population but only 4.6% of the world’s renewable water sources. Countries in the region already face considerable water management challenges due to high population density, poverty, and a high dependence on agriculture as a source of livelihood. Water resources in South Asia are over exploited and depleting fast, and institutions are struggling to manage and allocate water effectively. Climate change will only exacerbate existing problems through irregular rainfall patterns and increased incidence of floods and droughts.
According to a UN report, around 1.2 billion people, or almost one fifth of the global population, live in areas where water is scarce and another 1.6 billion people, or nearly one quarter of the world’s population, face economic water shortage. They lack basic access to water. The criticality of the water situation across the world has in fact given rise to speculations over water wars becoming a distinct possibility in the future. In India the problem is compounded, given the rising population and urbanization. The Asian Development Bank has forecast that by 2030, India will have a water deficit of 50%.
Then there is effects that urbanization can have on water bodies. Millions of people; landscape manipulation; waste material; dumping of chemicals and fertilizers; withdrawing water for peoples’ uses. As you expect, urbanization rarely improves water quality, but to prevent problems, one needs to understand how urbanization affects the local waters.
Links and Source(s):