BMC chief: Industries to use treated, not fresh, water for construction

Updated: Jun 26, 2019, 07:49 IST | Arita Sarkar

Civic body plans to make use of treated water compulsory for industries and construction companies; but this will only be possible when the Sewage Treatment Plants begins operating

BMC chief: Industries to use treated, not fresh, water for construction
BMC chief Pravin Pardeshi said once the sewage has been treated, the water can be used by industries. File pic

While the city’s water woes have been aggravated this year due to the delayed monsoon, civic chief Pravin Pardeshi plans to ease the situation in future, by making it compulsory for construction companies and industries to purchase treated water from Sewage Treatment Plants (STP). The catch is, this can only work when the STPs begin to function. The treated water will be used for all non-human utilisation.

Only when STPs start

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has long tried to set up seven STPs in Mumbai (Worli, Bandra, Versova, Ghatkopar, Bhandup, Malad and Colaba) as an eco-friendly alternative to dumping the city’s sewage in the sea. Pardeshi told mid-day that once the sewage has been treated, the water can be used by construction companies and industries for commercial purposes. They currently use potable water. “Instead of wasting fresh water in curing cement blocks and in boilers, construction companies and industries will have to purchase the treated water. They will then not be allowed to purchase freshwater. We can set up pipelines from the STPs to supply the water to them,” he said. Pardeshi added that while this plan is still in the early stages and they still have to figure out details, this measure can save a lot of potable water. “Once implemented, the consumption of fresh water will significantly go down. Treated water can be used for all purposes where there is no human contact, for instance, in flushes and boilers,” he said.

Ambitious plans

Despite being in the pipeline for 10 years, the R14,000 crore STP project is yet to start on ground. The work on the STPs was put on hold after a recent National Green Tribunal (NGT) order stayed the Ministry of Environment and Forests’ notification that relaxed sewage discharge regulations which were issued in 2017. But considering the pace of work, Pardeshi hopes that the plan can be implemented in the next 2-3 years. Currently, around 1,500 million litres of wastewater is dumped into the sea every day without being treated, and this has had a negative impact on the city’s coastline. The BMC’s plan of setting up STPs with tertiary treatment can increase the city’s water supply by up to 50 per cent.

Rs 14,000
Cost (in crores) of the STP project yet to begin

1,500mn
Litres of untreated water dumped into sea every day

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