Hydro 2001 to discuss big dams


PUNE: While the wisdom of constructing large dams is being questioned across the globe, nowhere is the socio-economic fallout of such projects more critical than in India. The Indian Society for Hydraulics (ISH) has therefore organised an open panel discussion on 'Dams and Environment' on December 7 at the Central Water and Power Research Station (CWPRS) here. Announcing this at a press conference here on Tuesday, ISH president Dr Z.S. Tarapore said the panelists for the discussion include M.G. Padhye, convenor-chairman, Indian Council for Dams and Development (ICDAD), Dr Ramaswamy Iyer, Centre for Policy Research and Dr Vijay Paranjpe, director of Pune-based Gomukh Environment Trust.

The discussion is part of the two-day national conference, Hydro-2001, which begins on December 6. The conference will be inaugurated by Som Pal, member, Planning Commission (water resources). Delegates at the conference would also deliberate on the report of the World Commission on Dams which has been critical of big dams. A former director of CWPRS, Dr Tarapore said a detailed paper on the emerging subject of Hydro-Informatics will be presented at the seminar for the first time. "Hydo-Informatics uses hydraulic engineering and computers to find solutions related to water and is already a hot topic on the international circuit," he added.

He said N.B. Desai, adviser to the Sardar Sarovar project will give a special talk on big dams. The key-note address will be given by B.C. Diwan, chairman, water and power consultancy services, a government undertaking.