Sasthamcotta Lake Water Level Rises

Published on: 22 Aug, 2013
Published under: Kollam District News

22 August 2013

After an alarming drop during April-May, levels in the freshwater Sasthamcotta Lake in the district has begun to rebound. In April, the level had dropped by 90 cms below its base mark level of 12.95 meters to reach 12.05 meters at the Ambalakadavu point which is earmarked as the deepest point of the lake.

But now the level at that point has risen to 13.95 meters. Experts monitoring the lake said that the level in the lake has risen by 1.90 meters in August compared to the level during the beginning of May. The rebound is mainly due to the good rain the area had received from May end to about mid-August. Compared to the variations from 2009 in the water-level between May and August this year’s was the highest.

And as the lake swells, all the hue and cry to save the lake witnessed in Sasthamcotta during the height of the drought phase has drowned. Those at Sasthamcotta say that environment activists are remaining complacent with the rise in the water level. But the level gives no room for complacency and the tempo to save the lake should be maintained, they said.

As the demand to save the lake was demonstrated in the form of even hunger strikes, a battery of politicians visited the lake, expressed deep concern over its plight and called for action on a war-footing. As a conservation measure, pumping of water from the lake to meet drinking water requirements in Kollam city and seven other panchayats was heavily controlled. Water supply was provided only on alternate days.

Even Chief Minister Oommen Chandy went to the banks of the lake and announced a package of Rs. 54.8 crore for projects to save the lake. This included Rs. 30 crore for constructing alternative drinking water projects at Kadapuzha using the Kallada River as a source and at Chambakadavu using the Pallikkal River as the source.

But as the rains boosted the water-level of the lake, nothing much is being heard about the projects to save the lake. Sasthamcotta Lake enthusiast, V.K. Madhusudhanan, said that the 13.95 meter level at Ambalakadavu now is the lowest compared to the August month levels at that point since 2009.

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