29 C
Lagos
Monday, February 17, 2020
Advertisement

What Happens When Cities Sacrifice Ecology for Development

Featured

5 Healthy Activities that Aid in Addiction Recovery

When travelling the path of addiction, recovery is the longest part of the journey. Recovery is an ongoing process of staying healthy and free...

Top 5 Anti aging Home Remedies

Everyone hates aging signs.  They cannot be averted but there are some anti aging remedies to combat them so that they can be delayed...

10 Dangerous Diseases Spread by Cockroaches and Their Symptoms

In one of our articles on home pests; we talked about cockroaches and effective natural ways of getting rid of them and the main...

9 Ways You Could Punish a Child Without Damaging Their Self-esteem

Statistics show that almost every single parent is confident that they are doing a good job raising their kids and teaching them life lessons....

Pharmaceuticals, Medical Devices, and Injuries: What Patients Need to Know

Just because a medical device or pharmaceutical drug is approved by the FDA doesn’t mean it’s exactly safe. Lots of devices and drugs receive...

Too Much Is Not Always Good: Signs You Need to Stop Chasing Productivity

A quest for productivity at the workplace or towards the achievement of personal goals is not something to beat you about. It is important...

Lyme Disease: Symptoms, Causes and Prevention

Lyme disease is a very infectious kind of disease that is gotten from the bite of an infected black-legged tick also called a deer...

Sulphur Food Sources: List and Benefits

Some of the safest foods on the planet are onions, garlic, kale, cabbage, and broccoli. However, have you ever wondered why these foods are...

What To Do When Your Child Has Nightmares

Does your child wake up in the middle of the night crying out? Does he tell you there are monsters in the room? Your...

Curbing Binge Eating Disorder

The cause of binge eating disorder is yet to be ascertained, but with more research, we’ve been able to understand the factors that lead...
Avatar
Reporterhttps://healthtian.com
Reporting news worthy and other types content from media outlets from across the web. all rights belong to their respective owners. If you want your content removed email us at legal@kraftysprouts.com with the URL.

As the storm that was hurricane Harvey deluged the areas around Houston, Texas, large parts of northern India, Nepal and Bangladesh also experienced heavy rains.

Advertisement

And the city of Mumbai was hit by another major flooding espisode. Several people have died in the city, many in the collapse of a four-storey building that is believed to have been weakened by the rains.

Overcrowded cities

Such loss of life in urban areas is often blamed on India’s overcrowding. Cities are growing at unprecedented rates. From a population of 2.86 million in 1950, Mumbai is now home to more than 21 million people, and is expected to have almost 28 million by 2030.

Built along the coastline on a series of islands, the city is surrounded by water: in mudflats, lakes, creeks, rivers, and the ever-present coastline.

Given the astronomical land prices in many parts of Mumbai, and the extreme scarcity of land, it is no surprise that Mumbai has sacrificed its ecology for development.

Real estate projects, industry, and state infrastructure (railways, roads and the city’s airport) have built over, and choked, the city’s water networks at various strategic points. Every monsoon, the city floods.

Mudflats, wetlands, floodplains, mangroves and wooded vegetation once slowed down the flow of storm water. The mangrove’s complex root systems and the branching architecture of trees acted as a natural barrier to reduce the force of water flow. But now, they are built over.

Garbage spread everywhere clogs the waterways. Most channels and waterways that connect water bodies have been built over too, resulting preventing streams from easily reaching the sea – forcing it to spread out into the low lying areas of the city, adding to the severe flooding.

Mumbai’s extensive wetlands and mudflats, which had connected parts of the city since the early 19th century, have disappeared. Their presence would retain the rain water and soak it into the ground, recharging the wells and ground water table.

Today, with nothing but concrete all around, the city’s land surface does not allow water to soak into it. In especially intense periods of rain, the devastation is extreme – at least 5000 people are believed to have perished in the infamous floods of 2005, and the economic damage was estimated at 30 billion rupees (US$690m).

Advertisement

The need for introspection

After the 2005 floods, a committee constituted by the government investigated the reasons for the devastation, concluding that there was an urgent need to restore Mumbai’s wetlands and water systems.

In 2007, the municipality formulated the Greater Mumbai Action Plan, which among other efforts had a major focus on the restoration of the city’s main river, the Mithi, which had become little more than a sewage channel in parts.

Yet around the same time, the chair of the committee overseeing the plan, water expert Madhav Chitale spoke publicly about the lack of progress in implementing its recommendations.

He said that the city lacked basic topographic data which were essential to build pathways for rainwater flow – which could have prevented flooding in subsequent rains.

Malad creek, suburban Mumbai, 2010. Ravi Khemka/Flickr, CC BY-SA

In recent years, climate scientists, urban specialists and civic society groups warned repeatedly that Mumbai was heading for another heavy flood.

A combination of the greater likelihood of high rainfall events because of climate change, and an even more inadequately prepared city, created a situation ripe for a disaster in the making. These warnings came true this monsoon season.

Mumbai’s planners know that climate change is leading to increased likelihood of extreme rainfall, and that restoration of the city’s wetland, river and floodplain networks is central to flood control.

Yet the rush to develop construction projections in the city has often disregarded these factors. Money cannot replace nature in cities. A careful reading of Indian urban history shows that cities have historically grown with nature providing a support system.

When this system is eroded – as is seen in so many Indian cities today, including in Delhi, Bangalore and Chennai – the very survival of the city is placed in question.

Advertisement

The story of Mumbai today is a reflection of the ills that plague many Indian cities – and those in other parts of the world as well, such as Miami and Houston. In a wetter future, it is clearer than ever that cities need ecology to grow.

Source: The Conversation

More articles

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Trending now

Eating Vaginal Discharge and It’s Health Benefits

For many people, vaginal discharge is a sign that a woman is ready and willing to have sex. Vaginal fluid is a whitish fluid...

Genital Warts: Do They Go Away Naturally? What to Expect?

Human Papilloma Virus is the causative organism for genital warts. The virus is available in various strains, and it can be contacted by many...

Anklet Charms and Hot Wives What Do They Mean?

Women all over the world love to accessorise. From putting on necklaces to wearing makeup and buying the latest trending clothes, women are ready...

Kinky Sex Punishment Ideas You Should Try

Is your submissive being a spoilt little brat? Are you noticing some unwanted behaviour? Do not be dismayed. Sometimes subs can be naughty, and...

Is Zobo Drink Healthy for Pregnant Women?

Zobo drink is a popular drink in Nigeria and it is loved by many; this common drink is made with hibiscus flower and it...

Skin Rashes: Causes, Symptoms and Effective Home Remedies

Skin rashes are common skin problems experienced by millions of people worldwide; it is characterized by a visible change in the color and texture...

Photos of Women’s Orgasm Faces Show True Female Desire Is Nothing Like Porn

A photographer has captured women’s faces before, during and after they orgasm to lift the lid on real female sexuality. Brazilian photographer Marcos Alberti said...

Coronavirus – Facts, Types and Symptoms

Coronaviruses are a type of virus that mainly affects the respiratory tract of humans and other mammals. These viruses are associated with pneumonia, common...

Trypophobia (Fear of Holes) – Symptoms, Causes, and Treatments

Trypophobia (Fear of Holes) is defined as a condition whereby individuals experience an aversion or fear to clusters of tiny holes. This condition is triggered...

Friends