Our planet’s water resources are vital for sustainable development. Floods play a major role in replenishing freshwater resources, recharging wetlands and groundwater and supporting agriculture and fishery systems, thereby making flood plains preferred areas for human settlement and various economic activities. Flood plains are subjected to periodic inundation by the smaller and more frequent floods that also provide nutrition to fertile agricultural lands, supporting livelihoods of riparian communities. Occasionally, however, floods have negative impacts on lives, livelihoods and economic activities and in extreme cases cause devastation. During recent years there has been an alarming rise in economic losses due to flooding in both developed as well as developing countries. The way we deal with floods co-determines whether water remains a life-providing element or becomes a destructive force against human life and economic development.
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