Bhubaneswar, June 5 (Local Wire): Experts working in the environment and water issues claim that the scarcity and lack of access to water in different parts of the state can hamper the preventine measures to combat Coronavirus.
“Summer has already hit the state. Many districts have reported temperatures upto 40 degree Celsius.
Several regions in the state are hit by water scarcity while piped water supply still evades several rural areas,” said Ranjan Panda, an environmentalist from the state.
Speaking on World Environment Day, he added, “Under such circumstances regular washing of hands to prevent Coronavirus is going to be a hit,” he added.
Sankar Prasad Pani, lawyer with the National Green Tribunal (NGT) expressed concerns on the used masks and its mismanagement.
He said, “We are now burdened with a new environment challenge.
Several of the used masks are now thrown carelessly.
Many of them are going to water bodies and other areas.
Mismanagement and bad disposal of the same can create a new environmental problem for us,” he said.
He urged people to follow the scientific way of disposing of the masks as the numbers are expected to surge with time in the light of the Coronavirus crisis.
Development partners of the state government claim that the state is working towards the issue but hinted about prevalence of the challenge which are compounded by natural and health disasters.
“Along with two cyclones, between last year’s Fani and the recent Amphan, we are also grappling with the COVID 19 pandemic.
Water and sanitation services are the basic need of every person and the state government has taken many steps to ensure continuity of services to the most deprived and vulnerable communities, underprivileged areas and to the migrants who have returned home,” said Monika Nielson, Chief of Field Staff, UNICEF, Odisha.
She also said, “Many parts of the state also face severe summer months which further compound the challenges of water availability and sustainability of water sources.”