WOW LEADERS SPEAK
(Here are thought-provoking excerpts from the meeting of TechTalk #10)
Kalpana Ramesh’s presentation [WOW #29]
can serve as a guide in some ways to carry out work at Ground level on : Lakes restoration, restoration of open wells, and of traditional Step wells. We have very similar challenges in Bengaluru or Chennai, with many of them even being insensitively encroached or closed.
It was inspiring to hear her story on how she built her interaction with Communities, Corporates & Governments. Or how she involved Realtors, Students, RWAs through training leading finally to their participation including financing by them. Her reach to Schools, Temples, Churches, Mosques, RWAs is worthy of mention. She is indeed an exemplary practitioner of water conservation. I thank WOW for organising her exclusive talk.
- UV Sripathi Rao, Hyderabad, WOW Member
Water has no affinity to oxygen
I would like to suggest a product. Whenever we talk about a subject we need a detailed understanding about the product. Water requires oxygen but we use ozone generators at the moment in a very very light concentration. Oxygen in its gas form does not dissolve with water. Water has no affinity towards oxygen. Ozone is 98% soluble in water and it gets converted to oxygen in a short time. So, we must first have complete knowledge about the technology we are using, and what it can do.
- MD Rana, Vadodara, WOW Member
The Sordid story of Mumbai’s Mithi River
The story about the Mithi river. The pollution board has no data with them. The only report they have was done in 1980 by a non-expert. As Mumbaikars, we volunteered to do it. The river originated from Kansa and overflowed as it climbed down the mountain and reached the city, with not just rainwater but also sewage and industrial waste adding to the river. We made an analysis of all the waste, where it originated from. The pollution control board in Mumbai to this day uses that report as a reference manual for every project. Now they are constructing banks along the place where the water overflows from the river. The conclusion is that we need a report from any river or water body we start working on to make a proper analysis and come up with correct solutions.
- Chetan Kale, Chicago, WOW Member
Enabling Tech Transition to India
In Delhi we have 17 different channels of sewage feeding Yamuna. So we walked along the river and did our data collection there and found about 5 or 6 locations along the 16-17 kilometres the river courses through the city and beyond. We found sites near the sewage drain where there was enough land to divert that drain water into a pond area for a 5-day retention time that would treat the water with the advanced system we had chosen from an American technology firm.
The settlement tank was to help the sludge ‘sette’ and then to treat the bottom of the pond. The 5-day spell brings down the biological oxygen demand. If such a system is set up around 6-7 locations alongside the river, the quality of water entering the Yamuna river would be significantly better than what it is right now. This is an approach that could be taken up in any city where there is a challenge of multiple ingress of waste water into a river.
- Raj Rajaram, Chicago, WOW Member
Going Nano Oxygenates Water Faster
Looking at all the inventions, I found one that was world changing and I had to be a part of it. What they were doing was creating nanobubbles and using them in an aerobic digester. It was very interesting because theoretically all the work involved consuming organic material, trucking out loads of water, sludge and putting it on fields. The amount of waste was reduced by 80%. When we got a hold of this company we started making a list of all the different markets we could enter. We discovered this could be a platform technology for water or oil or petroleum extracts and more.
WOW MEMBERS SPEAK
These are extracts of conversations of WOW members in the Core Executive Group. Add your comments, views
Reviving a Kalyani in Anekal on Bengaluru’s southeastern edge
This was a neglected kalyani, or a temple tank, in Anekal town.
With 2 Sunday's of work by volunteers, the kalyani was transformed to this, says WOW Member Vijayraj Shisodya.
“Feel so happy about it.
We can save minimum 60 lakh litres of rainwater through this restoration,” he adds.
AltTech invited to create a COE for Sustainable and Efficient Construction (COESEC) with Govt of Karnataka
Would you know of the Aqua Map at IITM that this report speaks of?
We are in touch with AquaMAP. Prof Pradeep and I were part of its conception. It is located in IIT Madras to keep overheads low. The objective is to influence water policy through technology and management.
AquaMAP will start with villages before moving to urban areas. I want to experiment with startups in TechTalk first. If there is a good response, we can involve CoE’s.
- E Nandakumar, CEO, International Centre for Clean Water, Chennai.
The start of the Hyderabad mission…..
Our 1 st meeting of WOW--Hyderabad has just ended after a marathon session of 1 hr 45 mts. It was decided that every meeting of ours will be documented not necessarily as lengthy text, even bullet points version will do. Sanjay Gupta has been requested to take up this task. Ms Kalpana Ramesh's reach to various stakeholders in Hyderabad is mind boggling. The presentation she made to us is just to be presented again to WOW--AF, Bangalore to know the voluminous work she has done in different areas to conserve water at the ground level. She has saved 450 million litres of water through RWH and it is not restricted to RWAs alone. Her reach to Society at large on saving water with practical ways, is truly amazing..
- UV Sitapati Rao
I N D I A ' S L O O M I N G W A T E R C R I S I S A N D U R G E N T
M E A S U R E T O A D D R E S S I T
Water tables have fallen drastically and we need dramatic changes in agricultural practices for resource conservation, says Sudipto Mundle. distinguished fellow, National Council of Applied Economic Research, New Delhi.
For years, we have been on the verge of a catastrophic water crisis. Water tables have plummeted by thousands of feet in some areas of Punjab, Haryana, and Andhra Pradesh. The tanks and wells have run dry. Some rivers have shrunk, while others, particularly smaller ones, have dried up completely. Water rationing is common in many cities, but in many villages, women must travel longer distances to fetch water.
In my March column on the entangled economics and politics of the farmers' agitation (Mint, 19 March 2021), I explained that the Green Revolution, which made India food self-sufficient, was also the source of the policy distortions that fueled the agitation. I also highlighted the disastrous ecological consequences of the same policy distortions, particularly groundwater depletion. Among other things, I suggested that the government gradually shift away from the near-exclusive procurement of wheat and rice (95 percent) at guaranteed minimum support prices (MSPs) and toward the procurement of other crops such as jowar, bajra, ragi, and other nutri-cereals, as well as pulses, oilseeds, and so on.
I N D I A ' S W A T E R C R I S I S : I S T H E R E A S O L U T I O N ?
More than 50% of the population has no access to safe drinking water and about 200,000 people die every year for lack of access to safe water, says Manas Ranjan Hota, co-founder of DrinkPrime, a tech-startup which uses a data-driven approach to solve the drinking water problem for urban India.
IIndia is currently experiencing its most severe crisis in its history. No, it isn't COVID-19. India is experiencing one of the world's most severe national water crises. Indeed, it is regarded as the epicentre of the global water and sanitation crisis. Because the problem is so large, our lives, livelihoods, and futures are in jeopardy. And, no, it's not a simple problem that can be solved with water pumps, a purifier, and retail bottled water.
More than half the population lacks access to safe drinking water, and approximately 200,000 people die each year as a result of this lack. Hard facts that can't be solved with 20 ltr water cans.
The current coronavirus pandemic isn't making matters any easier for the country to deal with. Approximately 82 percent of rural households do not have access to piped water. Washing our hands isn't a luxury that millions of us can afford, and neither is staying hydrated.
The government is doing everything it can to avert this escalating crisis. Is there, however, an end in sight?
A T O X I C T I M E B O M B T I C K S A W A Y
The country that pumps the most groundwater has reached a water supply and food safety tipping point that threatens political and economic stability, as well as long-term public health.
Circle of Blue's special report, based on years of on-the-ground reporting, reveals how a nation of 1.3 billion people is courting disease, economic hardship, and social upheaval by failing to protect its water.
A food supply "toxic time bomb" with global implications goes hand in hand with groundwater depletion and contamination. When irrigation wells run dry, farmers must rely on untreated wastewater laced with industrial chemicals and human sewage.
"The water went from providing life to taking lives," one villager said.
Alt. Tech Foundation is a not-for-profit, for-industry Foundation for
(i) producing sustainability managers and leaders,
(ii) providing green management skill sets,
(iii) hosting city-wide campaigns for citizen collective action to save water & energy,
(iv) purposing research for city infrastructure.
WOW Action Forum is a globally pioneering effort for bringing collective private action to save very large quantities of water at apartments, at Industry, at tech parks, or hotels and hospitals or malls and other such buildings. The 2021 mission is set to save 1000 Cr lites with community-led action. This alone will bring a saving of 236 Cr in electricity bills for the city, and a reduction in carbon emission of nearly 300,000 tonnes equivalent.