As Trees Disappear, Soil is Being Eroded, Cauvery is Drying up, and Farmers are Suffering.
We are extremely pleased to launch Cauvery Calling fundraiser to help save Cauvery, double farmers' income, and replenish groundwater. Please donate here: https://pxlme.me/RlPFO3IB
This enormous 12-year mission that Sadhguru (Isha Foundation, Cauvery Calling - Rally for Rivers) has embarked upon marries ecology with economy and will serve as a blueprint to revive rivers across tropical nations.
1) Why Cauvery Needs Saving?
- Cauvery has depleted over 40% in the last 70 years
- 87% of the basin’s original tree cover has been lost
- During the summer, Cauvery is unable to reach the ocean
- 70% of Cauvery basin’s soil suffers erosion
2) Farmer Distress
- 77% of farmers in Karnataka and 83% of farmers in Tamil Nadu are in debt
- 15 of the last 18 years have been drought years in Karnataka
- 17 districts in Tamil Nadu were drought-hit in 2019
- Almost half the Cauvery basin suffers critical groundwater depletion
3) Why Cauvery Is Dying?
Cauvery, like almost all rivers in India, is forest-fed. Historically, this region was covered in forests and tree cover.
The soil was constantly replenished with nutrients and organic matter by animal waste and plant litter. Organic matter allowed the soil to absorb water, and thus feed Cauvery.
Growing human populations and inefficient agriculture practices have led to an extreme loss of tree cover and the soil is no longer sufficiently replenished. The soil no longer absorbs water efficiently and suffers erosion instead. The soil, having lost its ability to retain water, is unable to sustain Cauvery. As a result, the river is drying up. The falling water levels and dying soil are taking a devastating toll on our farmers, who suffer failed harvests and crippling debt.
4) How Cauvery Can Be Saved
To revitalize Cauvery, rejuvenate the soil, and improve farmers' income, Cauvery Calling will support farmers to plant 242 crore trees. It is estimated that these 242 crore trees will increase water retention in Cauvery basin by about 40%!
5) How This Will Help Farmers?
Agroforestry is very economically appealing for the farmer. The reason is the demand for timber in India and abroad. Timber is used everywhere including firewood, furniture, scaffoldings, pulp, paper, floorings, cabins, musical instruments, sports equipment, etc.
But India does not have sufficient timber production and a severe shortage is expected as early as 2020. Nearly 25% of the over ₹70,000 crores worth of wood used in India is imported, while India’s timber exports value at just a tenth of that. This leaves a large market to be tapped in timber both nationally and internationally. With the rise in living standards in India, the need for wood is only growing. Some farmers are already profiting from this demand.
Through Isha Agro, Isha Foundation has already helped 70,000 farmers increase their income anywhere b/w 300% to 500%!