environmental science

Water is the most important resource whose continued supply is to be ensured for the sustenance of life on earth. Agricultural productivity, environmental purity, industrial growth, power generation and several other natural and man-made processes are also depended on water availability. Access to freshwater and to avoid its pollution is the first and foremost priority of a scientist in the field of water and environment. Hydrology, the scientific study of water in relation to the effects of precipitation, evaporation and transpiration as well as its occurrence in rivers, lakes and on or below the land surface receives paramount importance in this era of ever changing climate and human interventions on environment. Many studies reveal that the skin of the earth from its surface to the aquifer bottom is under severe stress, mainly due to the adversities of anthropogenic activities. A comprehensive understanding of the different hydrological processes operating in different environmental components/subsystems in the surface and subsurface horizons is a pre-requisite for better planning and sustainable development of our limited fresh water resources.

The Hydrological Processes Group at the National Centre for Earth Science Studies (NCESS) focuses on basic and applied aspects of research in hydrology and water resources with specific reference to Earth’s Critical Zone. Earth’s Critical Zone is a complex natural reactor where inputs of solar energy and, atmospheric deposition and gases interact with biota and rock masses of the continents to maintain soil, nourish ecosystems and yield clear water. The study areas of this research group fall mainly under three broad subject categories such as Surface Water Hydrology, Groundwater Hydrology and Environmental Hydrology. The thrust areas of research include Critical Zone Studies, Catchment Hydrology, Hydrology of Springs, Watershed Modeling and Management, Flood/Drought Mitigation and Management, Paleo-hydrology/flood and paleo-climatology, Fluvial Geomorphology, Biogeochemistry, Solute Dynamics, Water Quality monitoring, Pollution Assessment and Mitigation.