India – Treat waste water – use it for gardening – flushing – irrigation

Posted in: Ground Water News, Misc Water Issues, water conservation
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Article courtesy of Apoorva R Heroor | January 4, 2013 | Deccan Herald | Shared as educational material only

An eco-friendly project it needs less energy and maintenance.

Water scarcity is a major problem today. With low water level in KRS reservoir, the irrigation department has stopped releasing water to canals and there is no water for crops till June for Mysore and surrounding districts.

While more than 70 per cent of Indian population have no access to safe drinking water and sanitation, nearly 70 per cent of the rivers are contaminated due to human activities. Under these circumstances reuse and recycle of waste water can be used as a viable alternative solution.

Decentralised Waste Water Treatment System (DEWATS), approved and recommended by Central Pollution Control Board is one such project.

An environmental-friendly technique, it makes use of very less energy and requires very less maintenance and can be installed for industries, developers, hotel sectors, institutions and slums, said senior engineer of Consortium for Dissemination of DEWATS (CDD), Bangalore, Shyamala.

The CDD network has constructed more than 130 such plants in the country Bangalore alone having 20, two plants in Shimoga, one in Mysore and in states like Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and in other countries like Afghanistan and Nepal, she said.

DEWATS is an integrated approach which includes the reuse of wastewater. Its aim is to improve environmental sanitation conditions in poor urban communities and to reuse treated water for non-potable purpose.

The main treatment principles include primary treatment i.e., sedimentation in settlers and septic tanks, secondary treatment in baffled reactors and tertiary aerobic treatment in sand filters, gravel filters and ponds, she said.

Different modules of settlers can be installed based upon the organic load of the wastewater that is generated. If the organic content is maximum, the users can opt for dome shaped baffled reactor for bio-gas recovery.

The project is designed to meet the common wastewater problems faced by small and medium enterprises where the water discharged does not meet environmental standards. The water that is treated can be used for secondary purposes like irrigation, gardening, flushing and such other activities, she said.

Explaining the characteristics of the project Shyamala said, there will be an extreme fluctuation of waste water composition, extremely high organic level which requires limited space for construction and unreliable maintenance.

In Bangalore the implementation of the project has been done in the following areas: Kengeri, Bannerghatta, in a hotel near Hosur road, school in Surjapur, K R Puram and in other 15 centres.

Saraswathi of RLHP, Mysore has been working in creating awareness about the project. Speaking to Deccan Herald she said, in Mysore the plant has been installed in Roopanagar slum, Bogadi with a design capacity of 36 cubic meter for 200 families and nearly 700 users. The quantity of treated water is 25 cubic meter per day, peak flow being eight hours and efficiency of 95 per cent.

The cost of construction of the plant depends on the construction material used and the waste water usage. The project has also been designed to make it suitable to implement for an individual house, she said.

The treatment system will prevent contamination of soil and water, improve the ground water table, environment and health of the people in and around the treatment areas, Saraswathi said.

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