Rate of Siltation in Wular Lake, (Jammu and Kashmir, India) with Special Emphasis on its Climate & Tectonics

By U.D. Kulkarni, Asiya Nazir Khan and R. S. Gavali.

Published by The International Journal of Climate Change: Impacts and Responses

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The siltation rate in the Lake Wular, one of the largest fresh water lakes in Asia, shows abnormality in space and time, as evidenced from the preliminary geological survey of its catchment. The Panjal traps and limestones (with scanty intercalations of black shales) form the major provenance for the silt which drains into the lake. The lineament fabric suggests a strong structural control over the formation of the lake. The Tertiary uplift, as well as, the pulses of seismicity have been instrumental towards the modification of regional geomorphological relief and the resultant changes in the rate of siltation.
The climatic changes have also been influential in the varied rate of erosion and subsequent siltation rates. The valley of Kashmir, sheltered from the south-west monsoon by the Panjal range, has not the periodical rains of India. Its rainfall is irregular, greatest in the spring months. Occasional storms in the monsoon pass over the crests of the Panjal and give heavy rain on the elevated plateaus on the Kashmir side, being the main agent of erosion along the topography of the Wular lake. Also, the clouds passing over the valley are arrested by the higher hills on the north-east side, bringing torrential rains. These impacts have been further accelerated due to deforestation in the much fragile, mountainous topography of Wular. The topographic relief thus appears to have fluctuated in the recent geological past, as is evidenced from the silt deposits in and around the lake.
The environmental significance lies in the fact that such a rate of siltation would result in shallowing of the lake floor and may prove disastrous during higher degrees of run off, either due to excess precipitation or melting of ice. The present state of human interference, in the form of settlements around the lake and farming practices on the reclaimed and / or acquired land of the lake, are beyond permissible limits of the environmentally safety zones.

Keywords: Seismicity, Shales, Geomorphology

The International Journal of Climate Change: Impacts and Responses, Volume 1, Issue 3, pp.233-244. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 2.291MB).

U.D. Kulkarni

Reader, Department of Geology, N. S. Wadia College, Pune, India

He is presently working as a faculty at the Department Of Geology, N.S Wada, College , Pune. He has worked on a number of Geology and Environment related projects in and outside Pune. He is also active in the field of education, training and counseling students for various competitive examinations. A number of students are presently pursuing their PhD under his guidance. His work has been publisher in a number of reputed national and international journals.

Asiya Nazir Khan

Research Scholar, Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Pune, Pune, India

She is a research scholar in the Department of Environmental Science, University of Pune.

Dr. R. S. Gavali

Adjunct Faculty, Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Pune, University of Pune, Pune, India

Dr. Ravindra S. Gavali is working as a Training Expert (Natural Resource Management) for a Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) project in the Forest Department of Himachal Pradesh Govt. He worked as a full-time Lecturer in the Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Pune for period of 4 Years. He has given his contribution in the field of Ecology, Ecotourism, Watershed Management, Environmental Management, CSR, Wetlands, Climate Change, Wild life Conservation. He is a recognized PhD guide University of Pune and MPhil guide for Yashwantrao Chavan Open University, Nashik. Two PhD and one MPhil students have already been awarded degrees under his guidance. Currently, 5 PhD students are working under his supervision. He has published several research papers in refereed national and international journals. He is also technical editor and external referee for several international journals. He is also involved in several industrial consultancy projects and organized several Environmental Education training program for school children and villagers.

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