Toward a Managed Aquifer Recharge Strategy for Gujarat, India: An Economist’s Dialogue with Hydro-geologists

  • Tushaar ShahEmail author
Part of the Springer Hydrogeology book series (SPRINGERHYDRO)


Gujarat state in Western India exemplifies all challenges of an agrarian economy founded on groundwater over-exploitation sustained over decades by perverse energy subsidies. Major consequences are secular decline in groundwater levels, deterioration of groundwater quality, rising energy cost of pumping, soaring carbon footprint of agriculture and growing financial burden of energy subsidies. In 2009, Government of Gujarat asked the present author, an economist, to chair a Taskforce of senior hydro-geologists and civil engineers to develop and recommend a managed aquifer recharge (MAR) strategy for the state. This chapter summarizes the recommended strategy and its underlying logic. It also describes the imperfect fusion of socioeconomic and hydro-geological perspectives that occurred in course of the working of the Taskforce and highlights the need for transdisciplinary perspectives on groundwater governance.


Managed aquifer recharge Energy–irrigation nexus Groundwater depletion Groundwater economics 


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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.International Water Management InstituteIWMI Tata Water Policy ProgramAnandIndia

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