Facets of a Smart City: Computational and Experimental Techniques for Sustainable Urban Development

Effect Of Rapid Urbanization On Water Quality: An Experimental Study From Indian Himalayan City, Gangtok

Author(s): Archana Sharma, Mayank Joshi*, Rajesh Joshi, Devendra Kumar, Mithilesh Singh, Kireet Kumar, Manisha Upreti and Saurabh Singh Barfal

Pp: 76-91 (16)

DOI: 10.2174/9789815049077122010008

* (Excluding Mailing and Handling)


Sustainable urban development explains as 'scientific development' that meets the needs of the present without compromising with the future. It can be achieved by focusing on improvement, progress, and possible changes in the dimension of environment and social consideration. With expanding urbanization, the environmental quality is depleting worldwide. Like any other developing country, urbanization in India is also a rapidly growing phenomenon, where people tend to move to urban areas for better living standards. This ultimately has put more stress on the urban areas/regions. The Himalayan region, one of the most marginalized mountain regions of the world, has been experiencing rapid urban growth in recent times. In the Eastern Himalaya, Sikkim is one of the biodiversity hotspots of India with high species richness. Here the loss of biodiversity has been attributed in particular to overpopulation and anthropogenic activities. Being the capital of Sikkim, Gangtok has become one of the most rapidly urbanized towns of the state due to available urban facilities and basic amenities. Despite rapid urban growth and unplanned construction of houses and hotels, the pressure of heavy influx of tourists and other seasonal migrants have put pressure on the carrying capacity of Gangtok town. This imposed a major impact on different natural resources. Among those, it has a significant impact on water sources and water supply catchment areas. The present research has been carried out through a designed experimental questionnaire, which covers the different aspects of water quality, water supply quantity and source of water in Gangtok Municipal Corporation (GMC) in the last 2 decades. The results show that natural water sources have been decreased. Now in all wards of the municipal area, the municipality has provided a water supply. However, only a few numbers of houses have their own supply from natural springs. The results further indicate that rapid economic development, changing environment, and climate variability has increased the vulnerability of natural resources. Therefore, it is very important to understand the emerging issues related with natural resources for sustainable development. 

Keywords: Gangtok, Himalaya, Spring, Sustainable Urbanization, Water

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