Once upon a time, Delhi used to have more than 1000 waterbodies and lakes. These waterbodies act as buffer to store floodwater, recharge ground water levels, reduce ambient temperatures and urban heat island effect. Delhi being a landlocked city, these waterbodies also act as natural reservoirs to store excess water during rainfall and prevent flooding.
In addition, Delhi also produces 500 MGD of recycled water which is currently being wasted. This recycled water can be stored in the proposed lakes which can further be used to reduce the deficit of 200 MGD water annually faced by Delhi. Waterbodies also have social and cultural significance for various festivals like the Chat Puja.
Rejuvenating Delhi Lakes
Delhi government has launched a dedicated initiative called ‘’City of lakes’’ to rejuvenate water bodies. In the first phase, 250 waterbodies and 15 lakes have been identified. 50 of these would be rejuvenated by December 2021.
Results of completed projects are very promising and have led to an increase of up to 2 meters in groundwater levels. Lake revival also includes the planting of trees and providing appropriate infrastructure. We have seen in Dwarka and Rajokri that these rejuvenated lakes are providing much needed green public spaces for the local communities
This is an ongoing project and we hope to revive 500 lakes in the next five years.