Drinking Water Resource, Important, Use, Problems, Conservation in Nepal

Find here some facts and information about drinking water resource in Nepal. We have posted here some facts and information about water resource, the importance of water resource, uses of water resource, problems of water resource, conservation of water resource and management of water resources. Get information and facts about drinking water in Nepal.

Drinking Water Resource, Source, Important, Use, Problems, Conservation in Nepal

Facts about Water in Nepal

Water is one of the most important basic needs for all the living being. About 70% of the human body is made up of water. Human beings can live without food for some time but not without water. Water is used for various purposes, such as for cooking food, washing clothes, bathing, growing crops, construction work and for generating hydro-electricity. Water plays a vital role in the development of a country. Clean drinking water is necessary for good health. -“the citizens are healthy, development of a country will be rapid. Thus, the government should make all the efforts to supply pure drinking water to its citizens.

We get water from different sources. About 71% of the earth is covered with water and Nepal boasts herself to be very rich in water resources. However, about 20- 25 % of our people are still deprived of safe drinking water. The sources of water aren’t properly utilized. Water supply situation both in rural and urban areas is worsening day by day.

Due to rapid population growth, industrialization and urbanization, the demand for drinking water are increasing whereas water sources are drying up due to deforestation and environmental degradation. We often see long lines of women and children waiting their turn to collect little water in towns and cities. Villagers in rural areas need to walk hours to fetch a jarful of water.

Water Resource in Nepal

Nepal calls to mind images of the Himalaya, peace, tranquility, and voluminous flowing water, which when harnessed to produce hydropower for export, provides the comfort of easy revenue. Water in Nepal remains a seminal contribution to comprehensive thinking about the complexity of Himalayan waters. Water is most important for the life of living organisms such as plants, animal and man.

It is also essential for agriculture, industries, drinking, and many other purposes. The water of atmosphere reaches the earth surface through precipitation and form earth surface it reaches the atmosphere through evaporation and transpiration. Therefore, the continuous circulation of water from the earth to the atmosphere and vice-versa in maintained by nature. This is called the water cycle. Conventional water discourses are immune to the interdisciplinary perspective.

a girl is drinking water

A girl is drinking water

It has been calculated that total water on earth is 1.46 x 109 cubic kilometers. About 90% of water is found in the ocean, 4.1% on earth, 2.0% in the glacier, 0.052% in lake, river.


Water is a most important component of our ecosystem. It is raw material for photosynthesis and numerous other processes. Our body contains 100 pounds of water. It promotes chemical activity.

In recent years Nepal’s water wealth has begun to attract international attention as a resource of world-class proportions. Indeed, with a theoretical hydroelectric potential billed at 83,000 MW (Shrestha 1966) and an established inventory of feasible sites totaling about one-third of the above figure (MWR 1981), Nepal’s rivers hold the promise of abundant energy that very few places in the world can match.


When one adds to this electricity bonanza the prospect of irrigating one of the world’s most fertile areas -the northern Gangetic plains – for second and third crops, the vision of an overflowing cornucopia, seen from the vantage point of pure engineering, can be overpowering.

Initial expectations from Nepal’s water resources were based on an analysis that viewed falling water from a physicist’s perspective, which then fuelled both publicity and political hopes regarding the nation’s future.1 Subsequently, the evolution of complex problems involved in harnessing the cascading waters of the Himalaya began to cast doubts on the viability of quick development. There were physical uncertainties regarding the quantity and nature of Nepal’s water.

Water Pollution in Nepal: Source, Causes, Solution, Effects etc

Very little was known about the riverbeds and hills upon which gigantic engineering structures were to be built, and what became known was generally unfavorable to large structures. There were also incongruities between the vision of full-scale water resources development and larger social realities. These difficulties have taken the romantic euphoria out of Nepal’s water, and have left an uncomfortable hiatus in public debates regarding this physical asset.

This monograph is an attempt to step back and re-scan the horizon. It is an interdisciplinary effort at slicing anew the whole that is Nepal and her water resources and synthesizing the various strands of social and physical concerns that bear upon Nepali water (Gyawali 1983c). It does not propose a deep analysis of any individual element pertaining to water, although the need and scope exist for very specialized studies of the many manifestations of water. Indeed, for the specialist in the different disciplines, the treatment of their favorite subject in this monograph may seem to be hopelessly brief and almost callous. It is because the task set forth is to pick out only the essence of the various elements and to see how it weaves into the fabric.

Drinking Water in Nepal in the Past

In the past, people used to drink water directly from the source. The first piped water for drinking purpose was launched in Kathmandu during the time of Bir Shumsher. Water was brought through pipes from Shivapuri area and stored in a reservoir in Bansbari, Maharajgung. From the reservoir, water was supplied to different parts in the valley.

Similarly, during the time of Bhim Shumsher, water was brought through pipes from Sangle Khola and stored in the reservoir at Balaju and distributed to different places in Kathmandu.

In the context of Nepal, during the ruling period of Bir Shumsher, the first piped water was launched in Kathmandu for the drinking purpose. It was brought from Shivapuri area in Bansbari, Maharajgung. This water was supplied in the Kathmandu Valley. Similarly, during the time of Bhim Shumsher, water was brought through pipes from Sangle Khola and stored in the reservoir at Balaju and distributed to different places in Kathmandu.

However, it is only since the First Five Year Plan (1956-6 IAD) that the water supply became somewhat organized and systematic.

Drinking water in Nepal

“Water, water everywhere, but not a drop to drink”. In most of the remote and rural areas, people drink directly from the sources like rivers, spring, ponds etc. These open sources of water are polluted and contaminated. Many of these water sources dry up in winter. Such polluted water is the main cause for water-borne diseases like dysentery, typhoid, and cholera. Every year many infants, children, and adults become victims of these diseases.

There is an acute problem of rapid population growth in urban areas. The demand for drinking water is very high but difficult to fulfill. Most of the water-pipes laid down during the time of Ranas have little or no maintenances. Due to the carelessness of the people, water goes wasted as taps are let open event after use. People have to wake up early in the morning and have to stand in the queue for a long time just to get a bucket of water. Often people have to fulfill their needs by buying water from the private sector.