Climate speaks through water. As our climate changes, rising global temperatures are causing more intense storms; untimely and intense rainfall is leading to frequent floods and droughts, causing sea levels to rise and glaciers to melt. We face not only a rapidly careening climate crisis but also a brutal change in our water reality. We HAVE to adapt for the future NOW.
India@75: Tracing the colonial hand in evolving water tapestry
Photo by Ray Bilcliff on Pexels.com Many of the seeds of the our tangled thicket of a water crisis originate in colonial times - a penchant for growing crops unsuited to local climes, a centralized control-and-command approach to irrigation and water supply, and a certain disdain for traditional water technologies that 'get' India's water. We've …
Continue reading India@75: Tracing the colonial hand in evolving water tapestry
Shifting India’s Water Ship Requires All Hands To Push.
India's water ship is a mammoth ship - nudging it towards friendlier waters is not going to be easy. We need the individual to change: to acknowledge water, and recognize what makes India's water truly unique. This excerpt from the book that The Print carried, shows what that might look like. This is my story, …
Continue reading Shifting India’s Water Ship Requires All Hands To Push.
Watershed is out!
When I ran out of home, I never thought that 9 years since, that not only would we become water-secure at home, but that I would have written two books and invested in over 15 climate-related start-ups. Thrilled to share that my second book, Watershed, is out! https://videopress.com/v/W5Bf0Khk?resizeToParent=true&cover=true&preloadContent=metadata The book unpacks India's changing relationship with …
Keeladi – Life, Death and Water in Ancient India
Back to the Future: Keeladi and the centrality of water in an ancient Indian city. About 13 kilometres east of Madurai, on the spanking new Rameswaram highway, one turns right and heads through a sleepy village to a set of coconut farms. In between the coconut trees are patches of cleared ground with neat squares …
Continue reading Keeladi – Life, Death and Water in Ancient India
How India lost the hydro-disciplining battle against Pakistan – the road from Partition, War, Drought and the signing of the Indus Water Treaty.
Why did India deactivate its own hydro-disciplining tool against Pakistan? Travel from Partition, through the Cold War, China's takeover of Tibet, Drought to the signing of the IWT.
The Story of the Indus – Can the Indus Waters be turned off?
The Indus Valley provides a fascinating and disturbing example of what geopolitics, colonisation, finance and climate can do to a region. This vulnerable land, which the British transformed with philosophy, canals, land and tax reforms into what it is today - a fault-line between two nuclear nations. Today, with tensions rising, the question asked is “can the tap on the Indus waters be turned off?”
How to get voters to care about water?
A broken service to give the local politician a role, the importance of caste as a means of access, and the ensuing bribery to act as a lubricant. We have an equilibrium in place. Going deeper, lack of competition is one reason for the poor quality of services continuing. But it is not the only one. There is also the lack of data. Data needs to be unavailable, hard to access, or outdated.
Climate Change and India’s water
(A version of this appeared first in Firstpost on Sep 19, 2018) Undoubtedly, the water situation of India, which asks about a fifth of the world’s population to survive on less than 1/30th of the world’s water, is precarious. This is now. What about the future? India’s population is growing, getting wealthier, and, oh yes, …
Staring Drought in the Face
Short summary: It is bad. And it's going to get a LOT worse.