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Water Supply

‘Need a more sensitive approach to water planning’

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The Hindu        13.02.2017  

‘Need a more sensitive approach to water planning’

Hardly a third of Chennai’s waterbodies survive, says expert

The strategy we adopt to cope with the urban water predicament has to be different, and sensitive to the diversity of the country, said water policy expert Mihir Shah.

Delivering a lecture on ‘Urban water predicament in India: A way forward’, Dr. Shah said the nature of aquifer that underlie the towns and cities of India was different. “We need to adopt diverse strategies. Planning in India is centralised and is not sufficiently sensitive to the diversity of the land. Unless you respect the land, water planning will continue to harm the growth," he said.

Pointing to eleven key aspects required for urban water planning, Dr. Shah said people’s active participation was needed for a successful urban water planning.

“We need to protect local waterbodies. In a detailed survey of wetlands in the 1980s, Chennai had 600 waterbodies. Hardly a third of it survive now," he said.

He urged non-governmental organisations and the civic society to focus on restoration of local river systems to prevent fresh conflicts on water between the rural hinterland and urban areas.

Dr. Shah also said the there was a need for the government to create more number of urban local bodies to promote equity in distribution, participatory and decentralised waste water treatment. .

Policy expert Mihir Shah says people’s participation is pivotal for successful urban water planning


Call for water budgeting, restoring waterbodies

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The Hindu       08.02.2017   

Call for water budgeting, restoring waterbodies

The city’s households spend a minimum of 3% of their monthly income towards water, particularly during drought conditions, to cope with the shortfall in piped water supply.

With the growing gap between demand and water availability, it is essential to have a water budget and develop a sustainable drainage system during urban planning, experts stressed here recently.

At a media workshop on ‘Floods, cyclone and drought: The puzzle of Chennai’s water and climate’, organised by Care Earth Trust, K.S. Kavi Kumar of Madras School of Economics said many households with piped water connection spend Rs. 553 per month towards water needs. Those without piped water supply spend Rs. 658 per month on the same.

People without municipal water supply spend nearly 6.2% of their monthly income towards sourcing water from the private sector. Citing various studies, he said besides implementing water metering system, the government sector must change the pricing strategy. At present, the cost of water supply is nearly Rs. 13-15 per kilo litre. Economic incentives may be provided to encourage reduction in use.

Workshop on city’s water supply situation underlines the need to increase the reservoir capacity


City to get water from Siruvani soon

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The Hindu     07.02.2017

City to get water from Siruvani soon

TWAD Board, with approval from Kerala, to pump 20-30 million litres of water a day

Tamil Nadu Water Supply and Drainage(TWAD) Board will soon pump Siruvani water to the city. According to sources, the Board, with approval from the Kerala Government, will pump 20 - 30 million litres of water a day to the city.

It will pump the water from dead storage area on the Siruvani Reservoir’s bed to the fourth in-take valve (the lowest). From there the water will reach the city through the main supply line. And from the main storage reservoir in Bharathi Park, the Corporation will supply the water to the city’s residents.

The TWAD Board sources say that after it got the green signal, it has started taking steps to pump the water. It would take a day or two for the water to reach the Bharathi Park reservoir.

Corporation sources say that it will use the water to feed the residents in the five Siruvani-dependent areas - Wards 15, 18, 19, 20 and 21 - who are hitherto fed with lorries.

Meanwhile, the Corporation is in talks with owners of private water tankers to increase the water supply. Sources say that the civic body has at present engaged 12 lorries in the five wards. This is likely to go up in the coming days.

Alternatively, the Corporation has also planned to erect water tanks on lanes and by-lanes in the five wards.

A preliminary estimate suggests that the Corporation will have to erect up to 60 tanks to feed residents on the lanes and by-lanes, where lorries would not be able to reach them. The tankers will fill water in the tanks and from the tanks the residents will fetch water.

The sources say that this will also reduce the time taken by lorries to supply water and result in increase in number of trips. At present each lorry does about five trips a day.

The sources add that all this depends on the tapping of the Siruvani water. If it comes through then the situation will ease a bit.


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