What is “Deep Ocean Mission”? Mentioning its objectives, discuss the significance of the mission for India.\

Demand of the Question:
Introduction : Explain Deep Ocean Mission
Body: Highlight its objectives
Discuss how Deep ocean mission will benefit India’s economic and strategic interests
Conclusion: Conclude as per context
Deep Ocean exploration means the exploration of physical, chemical and biological conditions on the sea bed for scientific and commercial purposes. The ocean depths still remain largely unexplored and undiscovered part of the planet. India has a status of pioneer investor since 1987 and was allotted a site in central Indian Ocean basin by International seabed authority for exploration and technology development for polymetallic nodule mining. Recently, India announced an ambitious ‘Deep Ocean Mission’ to boost its deep-sea exploration capabilities. The mission proposes to explore the deep ocean similar to space exploration started by ISRO about 35 years ago.
It aims to explore the depths of the ocean for the possibilities of deep-sea mining. The focus of the mission will be on developing technologies for deep-sea mining such as underwater vehicles and underwater robotics and ocean climate change advisory services, among others
There are two key projects planned in the ‘Deep Ocean Mission’ report:

  1. A desalination plant powered by tidal energy
  2. A submersible vehicle that can explore depths of at least 6,000 meters.
    The whole mission is expected to cost Rs. 8000 Crore, It would be an integrated program where several scientific departments such as ISRO, DBT, DST, DRDO and ICAR will collaborate to sustainably harness the ocean resources.
  3. The ‘Deep Ocean Mission’ plan will enable India to develop capabilities to exploit resources in our 2.2 Million square Km of exclusive economic zone
  4. India has been allotted 75,000 square kilometers in the Central Indian Ocean Basin (CIOB) by UN International Sea Bed Authority for exploration of poly-metallic nodules.
  5. CIOB reserves contain deposits of metals like iron, manganese, nickel and cobalt considered to be of economic and strategic importance. It is envisaged that 10% of recovery of that large reserve can meet the energy requirement of India for the next 100 years.
  6. Research about Ocean floor can help us make informed decisions on Climate change, and help predict earthquake and Tsunamis.
  7. Unlocking the mysteries of deep-sea ecosystem can reveal new sources of medical drugs, food and other resources.
  8. It will create huge job and business opportunities in ocean sciences
  9. It will advance us on the path of leveraging Blue economy for overall economic growth of the country.
  10. As part of this mission, recently Ministry of earth sciences has announced a pilot project “Samudrayaan” to send men into the deep sea in a submersible vehicle for ocean studies by 2021-22. The mission intended to harness ocean resources in a “responsible way” could turn out to be a transformative step for the prosperity of the nation.
Effective water management calls for a multidimensional approach that addresses both ecological and socio-economic concerns regarding water use and exploitation. Discuss in the Indian context.

Demand of the Question:
Introduction: Briefly mention about Water Crisis with some data
Body: Ecological and Socio-economic concerns regarding Water use and exploitation Effective Water Management for addressing Ecological and socio-economic concerns
Conclusion: As per the context.
Effective water management calls for a multidimensional approach that addresses both ecological and socio-economic concerns regarding water use and exploitation. Discuss in Indian context.
According to a Niti Aayog Composite Water Management Index Report 2018, India is currently suffering from the worst water crisis in its history with the country ranked at 120 among 122 countries in the quality of water (Water Quality Index released by WaterAid).
Ecological and Socio-economic concerns regarding Water use and exploitation:

  1. Composite Water Management Index (CWMI) acknowledged that the country is suffering from the worst water crisis in history and about 600 million people or about 45% of the Indian population suffer from high to severe water stress.
  2. The report predicted that 21 Indian cities will run out of ground water (which is the main source of water in most Indian cities) by 2020, nearly 40% of the population will have absolutely no access to drinking water by 2030, and 6% of India’s GDP would be lost by 2050 due to water crisis.
  3. According to ICAR the per capita availability of water is estimated to decline to 1,465 cubic meter by 2025 and 1,235 cubic meter by 2050. If it declines further to around 1,000-1,100 cubic meter, then India could be declared as water-stressed country.
  4. FAO estimates that poor drainage and irrigation practices have led to waterlogging and salinization of about 10 percent of the world’s irrigated lands. These practices also contribute to the spread of water-borne diseases, such as diarrhoea, cholera, typhoid and malaria.
  5. Virtual water exports – the molecules of H20 embedded in exported goods, alongside those rendered unusable by the production of those goods – amount to a net 95.4 billion cubic meters a year, according to data collected by the Water Footprint Network. Examples – Rice and cotton, sugar and water buffalo meat.
  6. Sociocultural implications of the crisis are far less noticed. India’s patriarchal society puts the burden of household chores on girls and women. To complete their daily tasks, they are made to travel miles each day to collect water.
    Effective Water Management for addressing Ecological and socio-economic concerns:
  7. Irrigation water use accounts for 80% of the available water, i.e. 700 BCM. Conventional surface irrigation provides 60-70% efficiency, whereas, higher efficiency of up to 70-80% with sprinkler and 90% with drip irrigation systems can be achieved.
  8. States should continue to focus on command area development (CAD). This is now part of Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana (PMKSY) which focuses on “more crop per drop”.
  9. New agronomic practices like sub-surface irrigation, raised bead planting ridge-furrow method of sowing, and precision farming etc which have the potential to reduce water-use in agriculture should also be adopted.
  10. Northwestern and central part of the country which is severely water stressed should stop producing water-intensive crops like rice and sugarcane. Farmers should be given adequate incentives to switch to shift to crops like millets which require much less water and are climate resilient. For Example: #LetsMillet Campaign by the Karnataka government.
  11. Effective water management on broader level needs strong political will and setting up the Jal Shakti Mantralaya is a step in the right direction. The ‘Draft Water Framework Bill 2016’, as proposed by the Water Resources Ministry, and pending for enactment, should be urgently finalised.
  12. As per the UN’s Dublin Principle (1992), water is an economic good and hence should reflect its scarcity value. National Water Framework Bill lays down the principle of water pricing, it says that water used for commercial agriculture and industry should be priced on full economic pricing basis and for domestic use, a graded pricing system may be adopted.
  13. With the increasing population and dependence on water, it becomes pertinent for households to start investing in rain-water harvesting systems (RWH). Govt, both at the centre and state must take a proactive step towards making it mandatory for buildings and complexes to install Rainwater Harvesting System
    With global warming on the rise and unpredictable rainfall pattern the country can no longer afford to waste its dwindling water resources. A rapidly urbanizing and developing India needs to drought-proof its cities and rationalize its farming. Water-harvesting must be a priority, alongside mechanisms for groundwater replenishment.
    Additional Content Best Practices:
    Irrigation Water Management:
  14. Mission Kakatiya,Telangana
  15. Participatory Irrigation Management (PIM) – Waghad, Maharashtra
  16. Bhungroo – GroundWater Injection Well, Gujarat
  17. Drinking Water Management
    Traditional Water Management:
  18. Johads, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan
  19. Ahar Pyne, Bihar
  20. Apatani, Arunachal Pradesh
  21. Phad, Maharashtra
  22. Kuls/Kuhls in Himalayan Region, Himachal Pradesh
  23. Bamboo Drip Irrigation, Meghalaya
    Watershed Management:
  24. Artificial Glaciers, Ladakh
  25. Hiware Bazar, Maharashtra
  26. Dhara-Vikas: Enhancing Rural Water Security in Drought prone areas, Sikkim


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