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Reasons why is it important to revive ponds for urban biodiversity

Ponds form an essential part of the urban green-blue infrastructure where water bodies & land are interdependent and grow in tandem.

By B. Mohita
New Update
Why is it important to revive ponds for ecosystem

India harbours 18% of the world’s population and yet, it has access to only 4% of the water resources. A NITI Aayog report released in 2018 cautioned that 600 million people in India are facing high to extreme water stress in the country.  About three-fourths of the households in the country do not have drinking water at their premise. With nearly 70% of water being contaminated, India is miserably placed at 120th amongst 122 countries in the water quality index. Adding to the woes is India’s dependence on an increasingly erratic monsoon for its water requirements increases this challenge. Climate change is likely to exacerbate this pressure on water resources, even as the frequency and intensity of floods and droughts in the country increase.

Rejuvenating ponds is a big step towards dealing with these problems.

Ponds as saviours

Ponds form an essential part of the urban green-blue infrastructure. This refers to urban planning where water bodies and land are interdependent and grow with the help of each other. At the same time, offering environmental and social benefits. This network of green (land) and blue (water) spaces can improve environmental conditions. Therefore, citizens’ health and quality of life and enhance biodiversity.

  • With an interplay of increasing urban flooding and rainfall shortages, ponds can act as retention and detention basins. Further, medium for water conservation through storing rainwater, as well. This way, the twin goals of flood control and water security can be achieved. 
Pondman of India revives Ponds in and around Uttar Pradesh
Pondman of India revives Ponds in and around Uttar Pradesh| Photo: Twitter/ramveertanwarg
  • Ponds also play an important role in the preservation of biodiversity.  Pond networks not only support aquatic life. But, are also a crucial part of the habitat of amphibians, insects, many wetland plant species, wetland mammals and other terrestrial organisms that directly depend on aquatic ecosystems. 
  • Ponds also perform other beneficial effects such as regulating temperature and humidity (microclimate regulation). They also enhance groundwater infiltration, thereby helping in groundwater management. They also a significant role in the global carbon balance, and act as a site for organic carbon sequestration. Apart from these, ponds have immense recreational and socio-cultural value, acting as areas of socialisation for the locals. 

Thus, the impact of these small, relatively new environments is valuable in supporting rich aquatic communities. In turn, enhancing local biodiversity and sustaining several sociocultural services that cannot be ignored.

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