Groundwater is the water that presents beneath the surface of the earth. It’s also known as subsurface water. The main source of subsurface water is infiltration. The infiltrated water after meeting the soil moisture is moving down to the water table to recharge the groundwater. Otherwise, the depth at which soil pore spaces or fractures and voids in rocks become entirely saturated with water is called the water table. About 30% of the world fresh water exists in the form of groundwater. A human being is relatively dependable on it. This ingredient is very essential for all of us. Groundwater is a valuable resource both in the Barishal city and throughout the other cities of Bangladesh. Where drinking water is scarce or inaccessible, groundwater supplies may of the hydrologic needs of people everywhere. There is a serious consequence in the years to come which is the depletion of the groundwater layer. It is supposed to be an unimportant and thoroughly good for nothing issue. But we have to work on it because it’s spread gradually similar to a silent killer.
The point at issue (Degradation of Groundwater):
We should be reminded that water is an essential part of our life. Our existence depends on water heavily. According to research, every adult uses around 80-100 gallons of water per day (Perlman, 2016). More than 95% of the total population of Bangladesh now drinks water from the underground source (Biswas et al., 2014). If we unintentionally use groundwater, the country will be ineligible to live. Due to unplanned water accumulation year after year, drinking water is not available in Barishal City area as well. According to the Department of Public Health Engineering, the water level drops below 40 meters in the last decades.
Due to the low level of drinking water, poor people are victimized first. Because the main way of collecting their usable water is deep tube-well. In the Summer season, collecting of usable water from deep tube-well becomes very difficult. Currently, some individuals are using the submersible pump for water extraction. That is why they have to pay a high amount. At this time, the only hope for water is the water treatment plant. According to BCC (Barishal City Corporation) water department, Barishal city needs 125 million gallons of water per day. But their supply of water is inadequate compared to the demand. They can supply only 47 million gallons of water. Nowadays, there is a genuine battle to collect water throughout Barishal city. Even, the dwellers of the city area are thinking of collecting water from different sources such as Pond, Lakes, Canel as well as river.
Figure 1: (a) Palashpur Slum ( Victimized People) (Left side), (b) Amanatgonj ( Excessive use of Ground Water) (Right side)
The study was served in different locations in Barishal City (PalashPur, Amanatgonj, South Sagordee, Middle Rupatoli). The survey was conducted in the quoted places of Barishal city for two days (9 February 2019- 10 February 2019). During the survey, the water purification center (Beltala, Barishal) was inspected.
For the study, a questionnaire survey has been conducted at Barishal City area. Data have been collected through focus group discussions in the study area. Secondary data has been collected from journal articles, relevant databases and government and non-governmental organizations.
Figure 2: Water Treatment Plant (Beltala, Barishal)
Causes of Suffering:
Our inconsistencies are responsible for this current suffering. Withdrawal of excessive water is the main issue of public undergo. A recent survey says that 70% of all water pumped from underground or diverted from rivers is used for irrigation, 20% is used by industry and 10% goes to the domestic residence. People misuse huge quantity of water for different purposes i.e. domestic use, construction site, field site, etc. For this reason, we suffer most for our desirable water. Thus, due to the misconduct of water, the groundwater is gradually decreasing. The enhancement of the population is gradually going on. This is because the demand for water is increasing. Although the aquifer is limited, they extract highly amount of water. For these circumstances, people are suffering a lot. According to the study of Indian hydrologist “About a third of the Earth’s largest groundwater basins are being rapidly by human consumption. Similarly, human consumption is occurring the depletion the layer of ground water in the city area of Barishal through a complicated situation directly or indirectly. Unrestrained urbanization is another cause of this situation in Barishal. Today these unpredictable situations have a fair size. At that reason, this is happening as it happens. People are facing a severe problem.
- Although the aquifer of groundwater is limited, we have to increase the usability of other sources of water like surface water and potable water.
- Monitoring the quality of the subsurface water for safe drinking water is strictly recommended.
- Providing awareness programs and skilled manpower.
- Boro paddy cultivation will reduce the neutrality of underground water
- For safe drinking water, the ability of the water treatment plant should be considered from Government and NGO levels.
- There The infrastructure should be developed to increase rainwater harvesting and access to safe drinking water.
- Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. “Water Use.” http://www.fao.org/nr/water/aquastat/water_use/index.stm
- Barisal City Corporation, (2016). Barisal City at a Glance: Barisal City Corporation. [online] Available at: http://barisalcity.gov.bd / [Accessed 21 Nov. 2016]
- The Termite Magazine, 3rd Issue (2018) “ Water for Life”
- WATER PRICING IN FOUR SLUMS of BARISAL CITY CORPORATION: ANALYSIS; (ISBN-978-984-34-3502-6) Muhammad M Rahaman, Professor, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Asia Pacific, Bangladesh, e-mail: email@example.com