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Water conservation: Lessons India can learn from California and St Kitts

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By Gaurav Sharma

With an exploding population, more water is being used up in agricultural activities than ever before. The rapid industrialization means that water is not being used just for drinking but for myriads of other purposes too.

Revered rivers such as Ganga and Yamuna have become dumping grounds for industrial effluents and human discharge. The utter apathy with which we have treated the water bodies of the country has reduced them from the pedestal of divinity to a specter of deplorable isolation.

According to a report published by BAIF Development Research Foundation, “Most of the Indian states will reach the water stress condition by 2020 and water scarcity condition by 2025.”

The UN report on Water Conservation also presents a dark picture. The study says that 65% of rainwater goes into the sea due to lack of proper conservation techniques.  Also, 90 % of waste water discharged in rivers fails to meet environmental norms.

What can California and St Kitts tell us?

Here, much can be learnt by the initiatives undertaken by other countries when it comes to preserving the most precious resource of mankind. The Caribbean nation of St Kitts has introduced some novel water conservation measures. These include highlighting consumer responsibilities such as respecting signage and rules established by the Water services department, reporting incidents of misuse and abuse of water, creating awareness of reusing water, propagating use of water saving devices among other things.

Such simple measures can be easily adopted in India. Beside the enforcement of clear-cut rules and regulations, people should be made more aware of the need to conserve water. The dire situation in which we find ourselves should be brought to light in no uncertain terms.

In California, every city and district with more than 3000 connections has been given a mandatory water conservation target ranging from 8 to 36 per cent, based on per capita use for the previous year.

Moreover, by rewarding communities that preserve water and burdening through fines those who consume water disproportionately, the government has been more proactive, not only in forcing people to adhere to water laws, but in transforming their outlook towards water as a precious natural resource.

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Ayurvedic Skincare Tips For Swimmers

It is that time of the year and swimming pools are filled with people who wish to escape the heat. Before you step out this summer, ensure you have some skin protection, say experts. Omkar Kulkarni, Head of R&D department, Netsurf Network and Austin, Head - Research and Development, Cholayil Private Limited, lists some tips.

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Spice up your life, An earthy touch, For a golden glow, The secret mantra
Swimmer, Representational Image. pixabay

It is that time of the year and swimming pools are filled with people who wish to escape the heat. Before you step out this summer, ensure you have some skin protection, say experts.

Omkar Kulkarni, Head of R&D department, Netsurf Network and Austin, Head – Research and Development, Cholayil Private Limited, lists some tips.

* An earthy touch: A dip in the pool can beat the summer heat but it can leave a severe tan on the skin for months. Try a mixture of Multani Mitti (mineral-rich clay) along with few drops of lemon and rose water.

If you cannot organise a fresh extract every day, pick body cleansing products that have "neem" or "tea tree oil" as their main ingredient.
Natural ingredients for healthy skin. Pixabay

After your time in the sun, mix the ingredients and apply on exposed areas. The paste calms the skin with a cooling effect. Also apply coconut or olive oil liberally over body parts that are exposed to chlorinated water.

* Spice up your life: Water in swimming pools contains disinfectants like iodide and chlorine, which cause skin problems like acne flare-ups, rashes and red patches. Cinnamon has great anti-microbial properties. Add a few drops of honey and Aloe Vera gel to cinnamon powder to fight bacteria-causing acne. The mixture also keeps the skin moist.

Also Read: Know The Benefits of Post-Workout Shower

* For a golden glow: Turmeric is known for its anti-inflammatory properties and cleanses pores from within. Grind neem leaves with water and mix it with one tablespoon of turmeric powder. Apply the paste on the face with few drops of rose water to clear up skin after acne break-outs and also to reduce scars naturally.

* The secret mantra: To avoid the contagious skin diseases and allergies caused by swimming in public pools, Ayurveda recommends adding neem leaf extract to bathing water. If you cannot organise a fresh extract every day, pick body cleansing products that have “neem” or “tea tree oil” as their main ingredient. (IANS)