According to a study by the Department of Geology at Anna University, the anticipated rise in sea levels in the coming year would cause a major threat to the fragile water table in the coastal areas of Chennai.
Another study, published in the Journal of Environmental Monitoring and Assessment, has explained the deadly effect of sea level rise on the coastal aquifer in the coming years.
“Given the rate of increase in sea water levels, the water table would witness an incursion of sea water up to 2-3 mm every year”, says L. Elango, Professor, Geology Department at Anna University. The climate change would result in volume of fresh water to gradually decline across the coastal areas.
Another major factor that is, rapid urbanisation has resulted in salt water intrusion in the areas extending from the Adyar river up to Palavakkam.
In wake of the increasing sea levels, every year the sea is coming close to land by 0.5 m. In that case, by 2100, we would have to let go 1.5 sq.km of land across the coastline. Main victims would be the places with flat beaches such as Thiruvanmiyur and Palavakkam.
It is difficult to change the land-use pattern along the shoreline in order to get a complete knowledge about the impact of climate change. We need to adopt water conservation techniques to maintain groundwater levels.
We also need to minimise the extraction of groundwater. Through rain water harvesting, water pumped in localities along the shoreline could be replenished. For residential complexes having large population, one must adopt measures like permeable pavements.
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