Researcher Exchange: A water balance analysis to support sustainable river basin management in the desert river, Luni in India

rever basin management

Indian Activity Lead Name: 

Dr. Padmini Pani

Indian Activity Lead Organization: 

Jawaharlal Nehru University

UK Activity Lead Name: 

Prof. Paul A Carling

UK Activity Lead Organisation: 

Host Researcher Institution: Lancaster Environment Centre, Lancaster University, UK

River Luni is the only major surface water source in western parts of the Thar Desert, Rajasthan. This ephemeral river is of great importance to the present and future development of the region. The basin hydrology is subject to the vagaries of the monsoon but the nature of the local geology means a lot of surface water is lost to groundwater. The river not only supports an extensive ecosystem but also plays an important role in the development of the region; playing a key role in the delivery of water for agriculture, drinking water and industrial water to many growing cities in the basin. The recurrence of flash floods, and their magnitudes can result in an attendant wasteful flow of valuable water to groundwater due to rapid infiltration. Rapid infiltration also makes any industrial pollution worse as pollutants are not diluted sufficiently and directly enter the groundwater. In addition, the largest floods expand laterally for many km across cultivated land, settlements and infrastructure. These challenges place increased significance on improving the understanding of local hydrology, land use practice and the development of tools to support adaptive basin management. Hence, the objectives of this exchange are to:

  • Develop a project proposal on sustainable river management of River Luni, as the only river system in Indian Thar Desert, based on a proof of concept develop during the exchange to Lancaster University;
  • Receive an introduction to statistical and modelling methods for rainfall runoff data from the Luni Basin;
  • Establish liaison meetings with local authorities and institutions who control data repositories and who are key stakeholders & beneficiaries of the project outputs, as well as strengthen collaboration between the leads.

Activity Date Calender: 

Saturday, June 1, 2019 to Friday, June 21, 2019

Google map location: 

Lancaster University