Astral Limited (Astral; erstwhile Astral Poly Technik Ltd.; part of the Astral group) through its corporate social responsibility (CSR) arm Astral Foundation has contributed to making of 9 ICE STUPAS across Ladakh on the occasion of World Water Day. The stupas are built with an aim to conserve many million liters of water that can be used later for cultivation, farming and various other usages.
Astral Foundation and celebrated innovator, engineer and education reformist Sonam Wangchuk and his institute – Himalayan Institute of Alternatives, Ladakh (HIAL) have collaborated for the globally-acclaimed Ice Stupa project that endeavors to address the water shortage in summer time which is caused by melting glaciers due to global warming.
Many villages in Ladakh are totally abandoned because their water source, the ice on the glaciers which melts normally in summer, has gone too early. ICE Stupa is an innovative way of bringing the upstream water down with the help of pipes and then sprinkling the water in freezing air. The below zero temperature then keeps freezing the sprinkled water and accordingly, a cone shape Ice Stupa starts taking place. The mid-size ICE Stupa of around 100 feet height can conserve water approximately equal 3-4 Olympic size swimming pools. The water sprinkling takes place between November to March – and then the Stupa starts melting as summer arrives and provides water for cultivation, home usage etc.
In line with its commitment to support water conservation efforts across India, Astral Foundation has accorded 4,200 meters pipelines and also required material for building Ice Stupas. This initiative helps get water exactly when it is needed the most.
On the association, Mr. Kairav Engineer, VP Business Development, Astral Limited, said, “We are extremely happy and proud to be associated with the globally-acclaimed Ice Stupa initiative by Mr. Wangchuk on the occasion of World Water Day, which has touched the lives of hundreds of people in Ladakh. Being able to address this critical problem of water scarcity that is threatening lives in the region and implementing resourceful solutions to ease the same has been our sole motive to partner with Mr. Wangchuk and his institute.
He further added, “Being a socially responsible corporate, Astral through its Astral Foundation has always supported issues related to water conservation across geographies and this initiatives is another step towards the same.”
Mountain glaciers are an irreplaceable source of fresh water for many communities and an extremely essential source of water for drinking and crop irrigation in Ladakh, a breathtaking region sandwiched between the Greater Himalayan and Karakoram mountain ranges.