Kasaragod District

The entire food chain is increasingly becoming the primary source of pesticide and antibiotic contamination putting the health and safety of people at risk.

The national conclave on food held on March 15, 2019 at New Delhi saw experts urge policy changes to promote sustainable food production especially organic farming as well as regulations to reduce misuse of antibiotics and pesticides. The discussions organised by the Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), a New Delhi-based research and advocacy non-profit underlined the need to regulate bad food and bring in a policy-level change in terms of advertisements on junk foods.

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Endosulfan, a harmful pesticide, is banned in Kerala but other such chemicals continue to be used. Groundwater contamination leading to unsafe water supply is but one of its consequences.

Endosulfan, a pesticide, has been banned in Kerala after its adverse effects were first realised in 1981. Shree Padre, a freelance environmental journalist, first brought out the consequences of using the pesticide by reporting on the various disabilities it caused among domestic animals and on the people of his village in Enmakaje panchayat of Kasaragod District. A study done by CSE on poisoning due to endosulfan confirmed the same [1].

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A book on traditional water harvesting system of coastal Karnataka by Harish Halemane.

Madakas are manmade structures for storing rainwater that was abundantly prevalent in Kasargod District of Kerala. Pallas on the contrary, were similar structures but not man made. Pallas and Madakas met the water requirements of the settlements around these structures. 

They were not just water bodies but were an important part of society. People would come together to build these structures and maintain them by removing silt deposited in them from time to time. This process brought the society together and taught the lesson of sharing and conserving water resources.

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This article by Aarti Kelkar - Khambete tells the story of two teachers from Kasargod district who have successfully converted sixteen acres of barren land into a forest

This successful effort made by teachers from Kasargod district to convert sixteen acres of barren land on a hill behind the school into a lush, green forest with thick patches of vegetation demonstrates how persistence and a deep commitment to bring about positive improvements in the environment through community effort can bring about positive results.

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Madakas are being replaced more and more by borewells. Efforts need to be made to restore these structures, create awareness, and preserve local knowledge.

Madakas are one of the fast disappearing traditional rainwater harvesting structures found in the laterite belts of Karnataka and Kerala. They are naturally occuring depressions with high terrain on the three sides where water from the surrounding laterite slopes, mainly runoff from the rains, is accumulated. These have been traditionally used to harvest rainwater by constructing bunds on the open fourth side of the depression to check this runoff from the slopes.

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In this article, Aarti Kelkar-Khambete narrates her experience of her visit to Kasargod, Kerala to meet Sree Padreji and to see the fast disappearing Surangas

Surangas continue to be one of the relatively less known and gradually disappearing traditional water harvesting systems of Kasargod district, Kerala and are being gradually replaced by borewells to meet the water needs of the community. 

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Groundwater management case studies that include the water tunnel of Sheni, surangas and river mining in Kerala

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The book produced by Communication for Development and Learning details traditional practices for water conservation and management in Karnataka

Waternama is a collection of traditional practices for water conservation and management in Karnataka. The book is produced by Communication for Development and Learning and edited by Sandhya Iyengar.
View/download the full book (29.2 MB)

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