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NGRI report suggests some areas in Joshimath sink by 3.6 feet

Joshimath climate change causing steep air-filled fissures predict NGRI report. Look now for more detailed information!

By Ground report
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Joshimath sinks by over 3.6 feet due to climate change: Reports

Climate change is a pressing concern for the town of Joshimath as it poses a substantial threat. A report from the National Geophysical Research Institute (NGRI), an esteemed research laboratory of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) based in Hyderabad, reveals that specific areas within the town have experienced a vertical subsidence of over 3 feet and a horizontal displacement of 1.4 feet.

Joshimath sinks by over 3.6 feet

The NGRI was among the eight specialized scientific and technical institutions mandated to ascertain the causes of ground subsidence in the area in and around Joshimath and carry out remedial measures. The report, which was kept ‘secret’ by the state government for months and made public only recently, pointed to "steep, air-filled fissures extensively developed and extending to a depth exceeding 100ft".

The fissures were distributed from the upper slopes of Sunil village having an altitude of 2,200m to the Marwari-Jaypee region at the toe of Joshimath slope, situated at a height of 1,400m1. NGRI experts said, "The fissures were mostly confined to the gently sloping built-up areas".

The report added that the subsidence was observed "in the middle and western side of Joshimath with peak subsidence in the north-north-west/south-south-east narrow zone of the town". The NGRI report added: "Land cover analysis of satellite data revealed the percentage of built-up area footprint from 1.25 sqkm to 2.5 sqkm between 2010 and 2020, a 100% increase within a decade".

Climate change causing ground subsidence in Joshimath

According to the NGRI report, these troubling fissures can reach depths as substantial as 115ft, ultimately becoming shallower at around 60-65ft in areas affected by subsidence. The most significant horizontal displacement along these fissures was observed in locations like Sunil, Manohar Bagh, and Singhdhar, where displacement reached an alarming 1.4 feet. Moreover, Joshimath residents have experienced significant vertical displacement (sinking) of up to 3.6 feet in areas such as Singhdhar and Marwari.

This alarming situation has raised concerns about the impact of climate change on the region. The increasing frequency and intensity of extreme weather events, such as floods and landslides, pose a significant threat to the people and the environment in these regions.

The satellite data analysis presented in the report revealed a startling trend. Over the past decade, the percentage of built-up area footprint in Joshimath expanded from 1.25 sqkm to 2.5 sqkm, constituting a 100% increase within this short timeframe. This transformation highlights the burgeoning vulnerability of Joshimath to climate-induced ground subsidence.

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