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Gangotri to Gangasagar 2500 Km Cycling, Get Together

Event Details

Gangotri to Gangasagar 2500 Km Cycling, Get Together

Time: February 17, 2010 from 6:30pm to 7:30pm
Location: Sanjay Gandhi National Park, Borivali.
Street: Western Express Highway
City/Town: Borivali
Website or Map: http://maps.google.com/maps?f…
Phone: 9833350096
Event Type: fair, well
Organized By: Round the Earth Cycling Organization
Latest Activity: Feb 16, 2010

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Event Description

Dear all, Round the Earth Cycling Organization is organizing a cycling event in which we are going to paddle Gangotri to Gangasagar 2500 Km parallel to the banks of river Ganga. We will be distributing pamphlets , stickers , signature campaign etc activities to spread our message to save Ganga river.. our event schedule is as
Morning of 17th Feb........
Flag of From Pune ... Swarget ... Tilak Road ..Life Cycle Mall.....
Then we will be back to Borivali by 5.00 pm and
6:30 pm Get together at Sanjay Gandhi National Park...
Train departure is from Borivali on 17th February 10:00 pm...
on 21st february .. Team will start cycling from Gangotri covering rishikesh, merut, aligarh, kanpur, Varanasi, patna, faraka, kolkata, Gangasagar and will head back to Mumbai till 27th march

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Comment by Samyek on February 15, 2010 at 10:46am
Where will we get cycle there? r we 2 pack off our
own cycles? R all expanses 2 be pay individually?
Comment by Dauji Saha on February 15, 2010 at 10:41am
hi kaustubh & other members of the expedition. it's fantastic to know that finally you have been able to complete the organisation part and is ready to flag off!! all the best to you all. cheers, ride safe and spread the word.
Comment by Ravinder Singh on February 15, 2010 at 7:32am
hi people i appriciate your endevour. iam living in Haridwar and i have visited gangotri on my moterbike, and i found some of the stretch to be not very bike friendly.
best of luck to complete team from me.
and is there any way i can keep track of your progress ?
Comment by Amey..Riding4Cause.from.R.E.C.O. on February 14, 2010 at 3:29pm
Lets save Ganga ...
Comment by Kaustubh Gujare on February 14, 2010 at 2:35pm
If Possible please read it once
Current threats
Pollution in Ganga River

Today, over 29 cities, 70 towns, and thousands of villages extends along the Ganga banks. Nearly all of their sewage - over 1.3 billion liters per day - goes directly into the river, along with thousands of animal carcasses, mainly cattle. Another 260 million liters of industrial waste are added to this by hundreds of factories along the rivers banks.Municipal sewage constitutes 80% by volume of the total waste dumped into the Ganga, and industries contribute about 15 percent. Recent water samples collected in Varanasi revealed fecal-coliform counts of about 50,000 bacteria per 100 milliliters of water, 10,000% higher than the government standard for safe river bathing. The result of this pollution is an array of water-borne diseases including cholera, hepatitis, typhoid and amoebic dysentery.
In Varanasi, some 40,000 cremations are performed each year, most on wood pyres that do not completely consume the body. An inadequate cremation procedure contributes to a large number of partially burnt or unburnt corpses floating down the Ganga. Gray dust from the pyres floats atop the waves, mixing with flower garlands and foam.
A total of 146 industries are reported to be located along the river Ganga between Rishikesh and Prayagraj. 144 of these are in Uttar Pradesh (U.P.) and 2 in Uttrakhand. The major polluting industries on the Ganga are the leather industries, especially near Kanpur, which use large amounts of Chromium and other toxic chemical waste, and much of it finds its way into the meager flow of the Ganga. From the plains to the sea, pharmaceutical companies, electronics plants, textile and paper industries, tanneries, fertilizer manufacturers and oil refineries discharge effluent into the river. This hazardous waste includes hydrochloric acid, mercury and other heavy metals, bleaches and dyes, pesticides, and polychlorinated biphenyls highly toxic compounds that accumulate in animal and human tissue. The tannery industry mushrooming in North India has converted the Ganga River into a dumping ground. The tanning industry discharges chromium, sulphide ammonium and other salts. In 1996, the Supreme Court had banned the discharge of effluents from various tanneries and factories located on its banks in Kanpur.


Ecology

It has over 140 fish species, 90 amphibian species, and five areas which support birds found nowhere else in the world. In a recent finding, the scientists have observed that various species of fishes which helped in keeping the river water clean are facing extinction. Over the years a steady increase in pollution in the river has dwindled the population of Gangetic dolphinsRiver Dolphin declared as National Aquatic Animal and on January 19, 2010, Ministry of Environment and Forests included in the Schedule I for the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972. According to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), Gangetic dolphins are in grave danger with their population declining at a rate of 10 percent annually. Industrial discharges, sewage, pesticides and the rotting remains of dead bodies have increased pollution levels in the River.

Idol immersion in Ganga

The annual ritual of immersing thousands of idols of goddess Durga and other Hindu deities in the Ganga river has threaten the survival of the endangered river dolphin and other aquatic creatures but also increases pollution in the already polluted river.
Comment by Kaustubh Gujare on February 14, 2010 at 2:35pm
Ganga in Kolkata

The main branch of the Ganga, the Padma, passes through the Farraka Barrage, a gigantic barrier designed to divert the Ganga waters into the Indian Hooghly branch, and away from the Padma. About 150 large industrial plants are lined up on the banks of the Hooghly at Kolkata. Together, these plants contribute 30 percent of the total industrial effluent reaching the mouths of the Ganga. Of this, half comes from pulp and paper industries, which discharge a dark brown, oxygen-craving slurry of bark and wood fiber, mercury and other heavy metals which accumulate in fish tissues, and chemical toxins like bleaches and dyes, which produce dioxin and other persistent compounds.

Ganga and groundwater contamination

While pollution level in the holy Ganga is becoming a grave concern for scientists of the country, threat of groundwater contamination is also looming even larger than anticipated and calling for urgent measures for its mitigation. Recent studies have shown that areas (rural and urban) on the banks of the Ganga have reported high content of arsenic (between 1,600 to 1,700 parts per million) in groundwater and it is a big cause for concern.

Ganga river is rapidly shrinking

The Ganga is one of the world’s most rapidly shrinking rivers. In 2004, the Ganga had 20 per cent less water than it did 56 years earlier, the study, conducted by the National Centre for Atmosphere Research in Colorado in the US, concluded. In the coming decades, it is likely to shrink even faster, and could even disappear in another 50 years, the study, called Changes in Continental Freshwater Discharge, said. The Ganges is losing water for two reasons: the glaciers that feed it are in retreat, which means they are losing mass, and rainfall in the region has diminished over the years. Glaciers all over the world are in retreat because of global warming. Rainfall over north India has gradually fallen over the past five years.

Ganga threatened by climate change

The Ganga is also one of the rivers most threatened by climate change, rising temperatures means that many of the Himalayan glaciers are melting fast due to Global Warming and could diminish significantly over the coming decades with catastrophic results. In the long run, the water flow in the Ganges could drop by two-thirds, affecting more than 400 million people who depend on it for drinking water. The report warns that in the short term the rapid melting of ice high up in the Himalayas might cause river swelling and floods. The formation of glacial lakes of melt-water creates the threat of outburst floods leading to devastation in lowland valleys.

Zooplanktons affecting food chain in Ganga

M Omair from the University of Michigan in the US has collected zooplankton samples from Haridwar, Kanpur, Allahabad, Varanasi, Patna, and Kolkata. He found that many of the zooplanktons that are eaten by the small fish have tumors. The small fish are in turn eaten by the bigger fish and so on, so the ill zooplanktons are getting into the entire food chain, including humans who eat fish from the river. "It is a bad sign for the environmental health of the Ganga," Omair said at a seminar held here on Saturday. "If the zooplanktons are gone, nothing will be left in the river." Omair said all the zooplanktons samples collected at various points along the Ganga were analyzed in a lab in the US.
The Central Pollution Control Board has declared the Ganga water unfit for drinking along its entire stretch on the Indian plains downstream from Haridwar. At many places, the water has been declared unfit for bathing as well, though bathing in Ganga is considered a holy act by Hindus.

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