World Water Day 2021 on the theme “Valuing Water” was celebrated at UCOST, Vigyan Dham, Jhajra, Dehradun in semi virtual mode. According to the United Nations, “The value of water is about much more than its price.” This day was celebrated keeping in line with Sustainable Development Goal #6 which is aimed at achieving water and sanitation by all for 2030. Chief Guest of the program was Dr Prakash Chauhan, Director, Indian Institute of Remote Sensing (IIRS), Dehradun. Director General UCOST, Dr Rajendra Dobhal welcomed the Chief Guest and all the participants attending through offline and online modes. He said that the percentage of drinking water was always same but due to drastic increase in population, the problem of water scarcity is being faced across the globe. We have to manage & conserve the water resources on the planet. In his keynote lecture on “Valuing the Water on Water Planet”, Dr Chauhan said that drinking water on Earth existed in three forms i.e. water, ice & vapor. Many cities in the world are in day zero water condition. The surface water is sufficient for us, but proper management is required. He highlighted the role played by microscopic phytoplankton in maintaining Earth’s temperature and said that without these planktons, within 4 days the temperature of Earth would rise by 4-50C. He also said that without any modern scientific techniques, our ancestors intelligently designated three important pilgrimage sites on neighboring glaciers, viz., Kedarnath on Chorabari glacier, Badrinath on Satopanth glacier and Gangotri on Gangotri Glacier, thus valuing water. He said that Gujarat, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh have done good work in water conservation through watershed development programs since 1997 and crop production in these areas has increased in recent years. He laid stress on reduction of water wastage and educating students and people about the significance of every single drop of water.
The meeting ended with vote of thanks to the chair by Dr. D.P.Uniyal, Joint Director. Dr Aparna Sharma, Sr. Scientific Officer coordinated the program. Sh G.S.Rautela, Advisor Science City, Dehradun; Dr Brijmohan Sharma, Secretary, SPECS, Dehradun, Dr B.P. Purohit, Advisor, DBT Skill Vigyan Program, Dr Ashutosh Mishra, Sh. Amit Pokhariyal and all the council staff were present during the program. 100 participants from different institutions virtually joined the program.