Natural Resource Planning using Geographic Information System (GIS)

Ramachandra T.V., Sanjeev Kumar Jha and Murari R.R.V.  
Centre for Ecological Sciences, Indian Institute of Science



Sustainable management of natural resources has attained the attention of decision makers in the early 20th century consequent to the crisis faced by the society due to unplanned anthropogenic activities. The anthropogenic activities has affected the quality and quantity of resources, which is evident from the disappearance of waterbodies, degraded catchments and increased organic pollutants in waterbodies. This necessitated optimal resource planning. Spatial and temporal tools such as Geographic Information System (GIS) are helpful in analyzing the spatial data. To meet the growing demand for water due to burgeoning population, planners attention is diverted towards alternatives such as rainwater harvesting, treatment of waste water, recycling, etc. Rainwater harvesting and artificial recharge of ground water augments the ground water storage and improves the condition of the other water resources in the vicinity. Rainwater harvesting forms one of the most cost-effective methods of improving the Ground water resources and for domestic water requirements. By adopting this procedure the rainwater is efficiently used and held in a desired locality to improve the groundwater condition, which other wise would be lost as runoff.

This paper analyses the feasibility of a harvesting structure at Indian Institute of Science (IISc) campus using GIS. Indian Institute of Science covers an area of 180 hectares and forms a part of Sankey lake catchment, located to south east of the Institute. The harvesting structure was marked with a detailed investigation on the land use pattern, hydrological analyses, catchment delineation, and identification of potential water demand areas. Ecological, economical, social and technical aspects were also considered, while marking the harvesting structure. Harvesting structure with an area of 1.5 hectares and a depth of about 3m can hold about 48,000 cubic meters of water. This was found sufficient to meet the requirement of swimming pool, gardening and toilet usage in the campus.  Topographical analyses with help of Digital Elevation Model (DEM) created using Geomedia Professional 5.1 and Geomedia Grid, suggested suitable location of the harvesting structure at eastern side of the campus. About 1.5 hectares land is available in this region to construct harvesting structure. Hydrological analyses to assess the water yield in the eastern part of the campus were carried out taking into account various landuses (sub-catchment delineation). The cumulative annual yield of the catchment ranged from 0.4 Million Cubic meters to 0.8 million cubic meters.

Address for Correspondence:
Dr. T.V. Ramachandra, Energy Research Group, Centre for Ecological Sciences
Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore 560 012, India
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Telephone: 91-080-3600985 / 293 3099/ 293 2506 Telefax: 91-080-3601428 [CES TVR]

PAPER PRESENTED AT 14th User Interaction Meet
NRSA Data Centre
National Remote Sensing Agency 
Dept.of Space,Govt. of India
Balanagar,Hyderabad-500 037
Andhra Pradesh,India