Published On : Fri, Feb 28th, 2014

Estuaries are under serious threat, says Dr. Shetye

NEERINagpur News.

CSIR-National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (CSIR-NEERI) celebrated National Science Day on February, 28, 2014 in the NEERI Auditorium. Dr. Satish R. Shetye, Vice-Chancellor, Goa University & Former Director, CSIR-National Institute of Oceanography (CSIR-NIO) was the Chief Guest on the occasion.

While delivering the National Science Day Lecture on “Physics of Monsoonal Estuaries of the West Coast of India”, Dr. Shetye said that India has coastline of more than 7000 km and estuaries more than 100. An estuary is a channel or an embayment with a sea at one end and one or more rivers at the other.

He mentioned that the freshwater brought by the rivers mixes with seawater in the estuary and tides force the seawater in and out of the estuary and thus influence the mixing. He pointed out that monsoon plays in important role to maintain ecosystem of these estuaries. High run-off during the monsoon (June to September ) and the rest 8 months of long dry season with little run off lead to striking temporal changes in salinity and velocity fields in these estuaries, he added.

Dr. Shetye informed that his research team succeeded in developing a model to study physical processes of Mandovi estuary.    The model is capable of reproducing the observed tides and annual cycle of salinity field in the estuary. He mentioned that the model also allowed estimation of residual circulation with more saline water entering the estuary near the bottom and fresher water leaving the estuary near the surface. He urged the scientists to develop a realistic model of an estuary.  Such a model can help to determine impact of anthropogenic influence, and answers to the questions like how much pollutant can be allowed to enter the estuary?, what will be the residence time of a pollutant,  what is the rate of dilution that a pollutant will experience after entering an estuary, can be found out.

Earlier, in his welcome address, Dr. Satish R.Wate, Director, CSIR-NEERI narrated the importance of National Science Day. Science should be practiced in such a way that it should be translated into technology having application to society. Mr. Prakash Kumbhare, Principal Scientist & Head, R&D Planning Division proposed the vote of thanks and Mrs. Jaya Sabjiwale conducted the proceedings.