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Parts of Tumkur District, Karnataka
Challenges and Way Forward
The key groundwater management issues in the area are the following:
Over abstraction of groundwater from shallow aquifers, leading to falling water level and drying up of wells (more than 2800 wells have dried up in the District). The stage of groundwater development is 158% in the District.
Substantial water resources could be held in deeper fractures but the delineation of fracture zones is a major challenge.
Challenges and the way forward for aquifer mapping in the area are the following:
Additional information is required on the weathered zone, in particular a complete weathered zone thickness map.
The delineation of deeper fracture zones, their density, intensity and orientation is key for identifying potential productive aquifers in the area.
Yet, the delineation of deeper saturated fractures is a major challenge in hard rock areas. It requires an integrated approach of remote sensing, hydrogeology, and combination of geophysical techniques, to obtain a picture of fractures in the area. Geophysical techniques are indispensible but may yield limited results at places as the fractures are quite thin and occur at considerable depth.
Recharge and discharge processes in both shallow and deeper aquifer systems and subsurface structures controlling the groundwater flow are to be studied at a close grid.
Groundwater quality needs to be ascertained for all potential aquifers.
Aquifer mapping will provide the scientific basis for drawing up aquifer management plans for sustainable groundwater use in partnership with stakeholders. Aquifer mapping will help in particular identify new productive zones to tap, understand recharge processes, assess sustainable abstraction levels, and propose aquifer recharge plans.