Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 35

Both rivers also produce and sustain an
abundance of life, and have places where
countless deaths have occurred, through
natural life cycles, religious rituals, and
the pain and conflict of inter-human wars.
But even more than the Rio Grande, the
Ganges has been a holy river for Indians for
almost 5,000 years as it is deeply rooted in
the religious myths and rituals of Indians.
One of those myths relates how the Ganges
was formed by the desire of the god Indra to
sustain the Indian people and so he asked the
god Shiva to create the river goddess Ganga to
refresh and nourish their spirits and bodies.
My concern is for both rivers and
bio-systems, but my experience is with
the Rio Grande and I have witnessed its
steady decline in just the past two decades
of living with that river. The Rio Grande
was, for many millennia, a mighty river
that meandered and flooded and enriched
the Southwest desert environment with its
blessings. Below the surface, mighty bolsons
and aquifers gathered the water from its
meandering but constant flow over the
surface as that water slowly seeped into the
bowels of Earth. Those bolsons and aquifers
gathered that precious life-sustaining liquid
for millions of years, but in less than one
hundred years, once humans found this
liquid treasure, they drilled and pumped
the bolsons dry until the water that
remained was brackish or salty. The river
is now channeled and engineered and less
natural and spontaneous - it is a managed
resource system.
My experience with the Rio Grande
drives my concern for the Ganges River,
since more than 600 million humans
depend on that river basin, as do many
more millions of plants and animals. More
than 40% of India's 1.3 billion people
depend on the Ganges for drinking water.
However, after it leaves the pristine regions
of the Himalayas, and the holy cities of
Rishikesh and Hardiwar, the river comes
under increasing agricultural and industrial
distress. And while 'farming' has carried
on in the Indus valley and along Mother
Ganga for several millennia, the high levels
of human population and industrialized
agriculture in the past century magnify the
problems with this river.
Mother Ganga is now the fifth most
polluted river in the entire world. In the 860
kilometers that stretch between Rishikesh
and Varanasi downstream, it is estimated

The depleted, distressed, and dry Rio Grande, near the Border Wall that separates El Paso,
U.S. and Juarez, Mexico.

Pollution and human waste of the Ganges River at the holy city of Varanasi, India.

that more than 3 billion liters of untreated
sewage from the towns along the Ganges
are pumped into the river every day. In
Kanpur, 670 kilometers from Rishikesh
and home to a large leather and tanning
industry, effluent spews directly into the
Ganges, sending black, stinking, toxic,
industrial waste downstream. On top of
that, the Indian government is planning to
build 300 more dams to control and manage
floods, sediment deposits, and - primarily
- to enhance irrigation for agriculture. Like
the Rio Grande, human management and
overuse has distorted and choked the purity
and life out of this gift to humans from
Lord Shiva.
The comparison ends here. These two
great rivers whose currents and changes

have influenced my life and so many million
more living beings so deeply, are calling
for our renewed reverence and restorative
action. Rather than manage them as
resources, we should work towards restoring
their natural grace, power and glory. Only
by doing this, will countless other humans,
plants, and animals have the opportunity
to thrive and flourish in their free-flowing
waters. Being able to step into their natural
currents, again and again, is an honor
and a gift. ■
Jules Simon is a professor of philosophy,
director of graduate studies, and scientific
director of The Center for Science, Technology,
Ethics, and Policy (CSTEP) at the University of
Texas, El Paso. Contact: jsimon@utep.edu.
Volume 19 * Number 5 www.awra.org * 35


http://www.awra.org

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017

President’s Message
Growing Up…with Managed Aquifer Recharge
Aquifer Storage and Recovery as Means to
The Regulatory Environment of Managed
The ASCE-EWRI Standard Guidelines
Managed Aquifer Recharge:
Managed Aquifer Recharge: A Global Perspective
What’s Up with Water? Sisyphus, Heraclitus and WOTUS
The New Economics of Water: Reducing CO2 Emissions in the Bay Delta Could Reverse Erosion
Domestic Well Aquifer Storage and Recovery Using Seasonal Springs
Philosophy and Ethics: The Rio Grande and the Ganges Rivers: How Human ‘Success’ is Choking the Life out of Two Great River-Spirits
ASR: Aquifer Storage Rescues a Small Water Supply District
Putting Aquifers to Work: MAR Applications in Nutrient Removal
Summer Conference Recap
Harvesting Glacial Meltwater with Managed Aquifer Recharge
AWRA State Section and Student Chapter News
In Memoriam: Peter E. Black
Herbert Scholarship Award Recipients for 2017-2018 Announced
August JAWRA Highlights
2017-2018 Editorial Calendar
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - intro
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - cover1
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - cover2
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 3
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 4
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - President’s Message
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - Growing Up…with Managed Aquifer Recharge
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 7
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - Aquifer Storage and Recovery as Means to
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 9
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 10
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - The Regulatory Environment of Managed
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 12
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 13
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - The ASCE-EWRI Standard Guidelines
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 15
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 16
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - Managed Aquifer Recharge:
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 18
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 19
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - Managed Aquifer Recharge: A Global Perspective
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 21
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 22
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 23
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 24
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 25
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 26
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 27
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 28
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 29
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - What’s Up with Water? Sisyphus, Heraclitus and WOTUS
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 31
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - The New Economics of Water: Reducing CO2 Emissions in the Bay Delta Could Reverse Erosion
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - Philosophy and Ethics: The Rio Grande and the Ganges Rivers: How Human ‘Success’ is Choking the Life out of Two Great River-Spirits
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - ASR: Aquifer Storage Rescues a Small Water Supply District
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 35
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - Summer Conference Recap
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 37
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - AWRA State Section and Student Chapter News
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - In Memoriam: Peter E. Black
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - Herbert Scholarship Award Recipients for 2017-2018 Announced
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 41
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - 2017-2018 Editorial Calendar
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - cover3
Water Resources - IMPACT - September 2017 - cover4
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