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Water in Nepal- Friend and Foe

Water covers 70.9% of the Earth's surface, and is vital for all known forms of life. On Earth, it is found mostly in oceans and other large water bodies, with 1.6% of water below ground. Nepal is endowed with abundant water resources from the availability point of view. The waters are regarded as the key strategic natural resources having the potential to be the catalyst for all round development and economic growth of the country. The vision of the future is that Nepal s poverty can be eliminated by water resources development led through agricultural growth. The strategy for economic development, employment and poverty alleviation is based on the background of the country s unexploited potential in the agriculture sector given by suitable agro ecology, substantial irrigation potential. The abundance of huge water resources and its proper utilization plays a vital role for the overall development of Nepal. Apart from using water for its obvious purpose like for drinking, washing, cooking and other domestic use water has been used in several of sectors and has the possibility to be used in many others. Nepal being agricultural country, the most important use of water in agriculture is for irrigation, which is a key component to produce enough food. It takes around 3,000 liters of water, converted from liquid to vapour, to produce enough food to satisfy one person's daily dietary need. This is a considerable amount, when compared to that required for drinking, which is between two and five liters. Hydropower is considered as a viable means of economic growth for the country s overall development. Though there is total hydropower potential of 83,000 MW, 42,000 MW is reported to be economically viable. However, this has been only a mirage as less than 1% of the potential has been exploited so far. Nepal is in a favorable position to supply water to China and India through construction of large reservoirs. Water is also used in many industrial processes and machines, such as the steam turbine and heat exchanger, in addition to its use as a chemical solvent. It has also been used for food processing. Water plays many critical roles within the field of food science. It is important for a food scientist to understand the roles that water plays within food processing to ensure the success of their products. The propensity of water to form solutions and emulsions is useful in various washing processes. Many industrial processes rely on reactions using chemicals dissolved in water, suspension of solids in water slurries or using water to dissolve and extract substances. It is also used as fire extinguisher as Water has a high heat of vaporization and is relatively inert, which makes it a good fire extinguishing fluid. The evaporation of water

carries heat away from the fire. The number of lakes and high speed rivers are also used as the recreational purpose. Rafting, boating has been the main attraction even for the tourists. Despite having lots of uses and advantages improper use of water can cause different problems. From a biological standpoint, water has many distinct properties that are critical for the proliferation of life that set it apart from other substances. It carries out this role by allowing organic compounds to react in ways that ultimately allow replication. All known forms of life depend on water. Water is vital both as a solvent in which many of the body's solutes dissolve and as an essential part of many metabolic processes within the body. Thus the use of not potable (drinkable) water has severely hampered human health. The use of water with Arsenic (especially in Terai) has caused number of lives. Water pollution also brings the same result. Excess Rain, sometime invites various adverse effects, leading to destruction of number of infrastructure, and destroying the crops. The expanse of water during rain submerges land. In a country like Nepal with hundreds of high speed rivers, it is obvious that during rainy season it would cause some problem, destroying land, crops, and other infrastructure and even taking lives. It would also Contamination of water which in turn leads to spread of water-borne diseases. A landslide or landslip is a geological phenomenon which includes a wide range of ground movement, is mainly due to rain. Nepal where hills and sloppy landscape are abundant, the rain weakens the base of the hills, and resulting in landslide. Which in turns cause loss properties, loss of lives, changing the structure of the landscape, destroying the fertile land and roads thus affecting in transportation.

Conclusion
Though Nepal is abundant with number of water resources, the backbone to the all round development of nation, if used it haphazardly without proper planning and forecast it may lead to loss of huge amount of property and lives. However the proper and planned utilization of the resources will definitely help in social and economic enhancement.

Acid rain and its impacts: A local or regional problem.


Acid rain is a rain or any other form of precipitation that is unusually acidic, meaning that it possesses elevated levels of hydrogen ions (low pH). It can have harmful effects on plants, aquatic animals, and infrastructure through the process of wet deposition. Acid rain is caused by emissions of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides which react with the water molecules in the atmosphere to produce acids.The chemicals found in acid rain can cause paint to peel and stone statues to begin to appear old and worn down, which reduces their value and beauty. "Acid rain" is a popular term referring to the deposition of wet (rain, snow, sleet, fog, cloudwater, and dew) and dry (acidifying particles and gases) acidic components. A more accurate term is acid deposition . Liquids with a pH less than 7 are acidic, and those with a pH greater than 7 are alkaline. Clean or unpolluted rain has a slightly acidic pH of over 5.7, because carbon dioxide and water in the air react together to form carbonic acid, but unpolluted rain also contains other chemicals. Emission of chemicals leading to acidification The most important gas which leads to acidification is sulfur dioxide. Emissions of nitrogen oxides which are oxidized to form nitric acid are of increasing importance due to stricter controls on emissions of sulfur containing compounds. The principal natural phenomena that contribute acid-producing gases to the atmosphere are emissions from volcanoes. Acid-producing gasses are created also by biological processes that occur on the land, in wetlands, and in the oceans. The major biological source of sulfur containing compounds is dimethyl sulfide. Nitric acid in rainwater is an important source of fixed nitrogen for plant life, and is also produced by electrical activity in the atmosphere such as lightning. The principal cause of acid rain is sulfur and nitrogen compounds from human sources, such as electricity generation, factories, and motor vehicles. Coal power plants are one of the most polluting. The gases can be carried hundreds of kilometers in the atmosphere before they are converted to acids and deposited. In the past, factories had short funnels to let out smoke but this caused many problems locally; thus, factories now have taller smoke funnels. However, dispersal from these taller stacks causes pollutants to be carried farther, causing widespread ecological damage

Adverse effects Acid rain has been shown to have adverse impacts on forests, freshwaters and soils, killing insect and aquatic life-forms as well as causing damage to buildings and having impacts on human health. Acid rain can cause damage to fish and other aquatic animals . At pHs lower than 5 most fish eggs will not hatch and lower pHs can kill adult fish. As lakes and rivers become more acidic biodiversity is reduced. Acid rain has eliminated insect life and some fish species, including the brook trout in some lakes, streams, and creeks in geographically sensitive areas. Soil biology and chemistry can be seriously damaged by acid rain. Some microbes are unable to tolerate changes to low pHs and are killed. The hydronium ions of acid rain also mobilize toxins such as aluminium, and leach away essential nutrients and minerals such as magnesium. The damage and the unwanted changes in the soil charectersitics affects forest and vegitation. High altitude forests are especially vulnerable as they are often surrounded by clouds and fog which are more acidic than rain. Acid rain does not directly affect human health. The acid in the rainwater is too dilute to have direct adverse effects. However, the particulates responsible for acid rain (sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides) do have an adverse effect. Increased amounts of fine particulate matter in the air do contribute to heart and lung problems including asthma and bronchitis Acid rain can also damage buildings and historic monuments, especially those made of rocks such as limestone and marble containing large amounts of calcium carbonate. Acids in the rain react with the calcium compounds in the stones to create gypsum, which then flakes off. Preventive methods y Many coal-burning power plants use Flue gas desulfurization (FGD) to remove sulfur-containing gases from their stack gases. For a typical coal-fired power station, FGD will remove 95 percent or more of the SO2 in the flue gases. Vehicle emissions control reduces emissions of nitrogen oxides from motor vehicles. Use cleaner fuels and Coal that contains less sulphur "Washing" the coal to reduce sulphur content

y y y

y y

Reduce amount of sulphur dioxide and oxides of nitrogen released into the atomosphere Remove oxides of sulphur and oxides of nitrogen before releasing. Use other sources of electricity (i.e. nuclear power, hydro-electricity, wind energy, geothermal energy, and solar energy)

Conclusion Thus, as we know that sulphordioxide and nitrogen oxides from various industres and vehicles , necessary step could b taken for negating its effects and also limiting its impacts. Various technical methods explained above could be implicated for the prevention of acid rain. Also Powdered limestone/limewater can be added to water and soil to neutralize acid which can limit the effects of acid rain.

Economy planning and its obstacles


Economic planning refers to any directing or planning of economic activity by the state, in an attempt to achieve specific economic or social outcomes. Planning is an economic mechanism for resource allocation and decision-making in contrast with the market mechanism. Economic planning can apply to production, investment, distribution or all three of these functions. An economy primarily based on central planning is a planned economy; in a planned economy the allocation of resources is determined by a comprehensive plan of production which specifies output requirements. Essentials of Economic Planning A development plan may consist of the following parts: 1. Survey of current economic conditions 2. List of proposed public expenditures 3. Discussion of likely development in private sector 4. Macro economic projections of the economy 5. Review of government policies Types of economic planning 1. Socialistic economic planning A socialist economy is based upon the principle of welfare of the people. A socialist economic system is based upon the principle that economic activities should be undertaken so that people would be able to use goods produced there of, instead of employing the production for profit. y Characteristic s of this system: y Ownership by Government y Progressive Taxation and Wealth Redistribution y Price Control y Nationalization and Centralization

2. Capitalist economic planning A capitalist economy is an economy where the government does not take part in almost any kind of production process. Capitalist entrepreneurs are encouraged by the government. The government does the duty of collecting taxes and safeguarding the security of the country The first and foremost advantage of a capitalist economy is that there are rapid economic growth that is observed in the nation. The second advantage is that all capitalists make an attempt to dominate the overseas markets.

3. Mixed econimic planning Such an economy is a mixture of one or more economic ideologies that are predominantly conceived from a collaboration of capitalism and socialism. Features of a mixed economy are:
y y y y

Centralized economic planning and legislature Decentralized execution of policies and legislation Government ownership of key industries such as communications and infrastructure, defense productions, steel production, mining, energy, etc. Decentralization of economic concentration and even distribution of wealth

Importance and Objectives of Economic Planning 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. Efficient utilization of resources Market imperfections and price distortions Greater opportunities Maximisation of National Income and Raising Living Standard Full Employment Equitable distribution of income Public oriented goals Price Stability Larger savings and investment

Obstacles and Limitations of Economic Planning: The following obstacles come in the way of economic planning 1. Measurement of labor force In economic planning, the identification and enumeration of gainfully employed population is a difficult task, especially in agriculture, where the employment is of parttime or seasonal nature. The important contributions to economic activities by women and children raise further complications. 2. Statistical data The biggest problem with economic planning is that the planner has to work with a limited statistical data provided. Moreover, the planner has to work with these data, collected through different surveys, consensus, polls, etc., without much questioning about their reliability and accuracy.

3. Unused natural resources

The under developed countries (UDC) are identified of their unused natural resources like land, mines, rivers, forests, livestock, sea, etc. A resource such as land, a mineral deposit, a forest or a rive may not be used in production because it is economically inaccessible. A natural resource is valueless when its cost of extraction is greater than the price the product can command in the market. Therefore, the fullest possible use of natural resources is not a sensible aim of an economic planning, and the extent of the use of land or other natural resources is not a measure of economic efficiency. 4. Population and real income The biggest problem regarding human resources is that in UDCs, the population is growing at a very high rate. Moreover, most of the UDCs population heavily relies on agricultural income. In the South Asia and Central Asia, there is a heavy reliance on comparatively backward agriculture. Real income is vitally affected by the quality of the population. 5. Uneven distribution of entrepreneurial faculties The material progress of a society is likely to be assisted greatly when there are dynamic entrepreneurial abilities. In economically backward countries, there are difficulties in the way of developing and utilizing the entrepreneurial qualities. The government can support small and medium enterprises to come forward and develop new economic opportunities. The government must encourage, both on private and public level, new agricultural or industrial techniques, adoption or adaptation of new improved methods, innovative activities, internship, on-the-job training, etc. in order to raise the level of economy. 6. Low level of capital in UDCs The biggest problem of less developed countries is that there is a dearth of capital, whether it is physical or financial. In developed countries, there is a high consumption of energy, whereas in UDCs, the energy consumption is considerably low. The general implication of low level of capital is a low level of output and a low level of consumption per head. In such economies, there is no assurance of continuity in supply of goods. Transport costs are very high and limited availability of perishable or bulky goods. Because of low level of working capital and storage facilities, there is a danger of acute shortage of food crops.

7. Political instability Most of UDCs, especially Asian and African countries, are known of their political instability, bureaucratic malfunctioning, corruption on administrative level, and nepotism, like Nepal, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Vietnam, Cambodia, Myanmar, Nigeria, Zimbabwe, Uganda, Somalia, Kenya, etc. Perhaps the

biggest challenge for any economic planner is the political and administrative malfunctioning in his way of economic planning.

8. Wage rates and unemployment In UDCs, the wage rate is relatively low and there is a high unemployment rate in the economy. Limited employment opportunities may create a pool of urban unemployed. These urban members do not enjoy the security of the extended family system, nor are they related to agricultural sector. They therefore are apt to constitute a more serious social and political problem then the rural unemployed. 9. Implications of restrictive tendencies Social, political and administrative restrictive measures are directed against foreigners on the basis of racial, national or tribal differences. Such restrictive measures are often directed also against the members of local population. It may put restrictions on the movement of people or on the acquisition and exercise of goods or services. It may also be connected with xenophobia , especially in the tribal areas and villages.