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Water supply and sanitation in India: Meeting targets and beyond

by Admin
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Table 2 shows the status of water and wastewater infrastructure in the six largest cities in India. Though the major cities reported an increase in the service coverage between 1991 and 1997, the availability of water supply ranges from four hours or less per day in Delhi, Bangalore and Hyderabad to nine hours in Kolkata; and 18% (Mumbai) to 50% (Kolkata) of the water is unaccounted for.

A household study conducted in seven cities in India found the average per capita consumption of water to be 92lt per capita per day (LPCD), below the WHO guideline of 100 LPCD for optimal access. Further analysis of the data by socio-economic quintiles shows that water consumption increases with a rise in socio-economic status, although the inter-quintile differences are not significant. The near-uniform water consumption across different income groups is largely a result of supply constraints and is not impacted by varying economic abilities.

These numbers raise doubts about whether access to improved water sources translates to regular availability of safe water. Additionally, the lack of wastewater treatment capacity in cities like Delhi and Kolkata threatens public health and the safety of already-scarce freshwater resources. A discussion on water security is incomplete without planning for adequate infrastructure for wastewater treatment. Not only does it allow for better management of available water resources, treated wastewater can be an additional source of fresh water in water-deficient regions.

Even though India has reported tremendous progress towards achieving the MDGs for access to water, the revised targets do not necessarily mean continuous and safe access to water, not to mention economically affordable water. Even large cities that boast higher rates of access are only able to guarantee very little water for a few hours a day, imposing health, economic and social costs on the residents.

The Indian economy loses 73 million working days a year due to waterborne diseases, caused by a combination of lack of clean water and inadequate sanitation. Access to sanitation, even more so than water, is a robust indicator of human development due to the complex nature of social, institutional and cultural factors that play a role. Low rates of access to sanitation underscore lack of action on several fronts, only some of which are due to lack of financial resources. Targeted investments in communities and individuals, along with institutions, will allow India to expand and ensure safe access to water and sanitation to all its residents well beyond 2015.

Source: Global Water Forum

http://www.globalwaterforum.org/2012/09/23/water-supply-and-sanitation-in-india-meeting-targets-and-beyond/

Desalination solution to water woes

A new analysis from Frost & Sullivan – Analysis of Growth Opportunities in the Indian Desalination Market – has found that the market earned revenues of 1.12 billion in 2011 and estimates this to reach 7.48 billion in 2015.The desalination market is in its growth stage and has substantial opportunities for the next 10 years, as industries such as power, refineries, and chemicals are adopting efficient and sustainable technologies for the supply of fresh water.

According to the report, Mumbai has high per capita water consumption, while the demand for water in Chennai is expected to increase four times by 2025. As both Mumbai and Chennai are located near the coast; desalination is deemed the most feasible option.

With appropriate government initiatives and legislations on water treatment and private partnerships, the desalination market is expected to pick up steam after 2012. The market will get a leg up from larger government funds, municipal desalination projects, and coastal industry power projects.

Reliability, efficiency, and technical experience are the other key factors considered by end users while choosing desalination suppliers. A company that provides end-to-end solutions and lowers the operational and energy consumption cost to the end-user will occupy a central position in Indian market.

 

 

 

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