Faced with an acute water shortage, the Gujarat government is planning to create regional grids to treat and transport sewage water to the nearest industrial cluster. The 1,000 MLD (million litres per day) capacity grid is likely to be set within a year and the water will be sold to industries at Rs 20-30 per kilolitre.
“Israel has separate grids for transporting drinking water and treated water. We have already created a grid for drinking water in Gujarat. We are now thinking of creating regional grids in the state, where sewage water will be treated and reused,” said JP Gupta, Principal Secretary (Water Supply) and chairman of Gujarat Water Supply and Sewerage Board (GWSSB) on Friday.
Gujarat generates over 5,000 MLD of sewage of which only 43 MLD is being reused. The reuse of treated sewage is currently happening at Surat where water is being supplied to an industrial cluster. At Bhavnagar, water is being used for a thermal power plant and Rajkot is reusing treated water for the construction industry.
“It has been clearly mandated that wherever wastewater is available, thermal units or industrial units consuming more than one lakh litres of water per day will have to mandatorily use treated wastewater. There is no option,” Gupta added. “We are planning a project for which feasibility study is going on. Under this project, we are planning to take Ahmedabad sewage water right up to Dholera SIR and Mandal Becharaji region,” the IAS officer added.
Different industrial clusters have been identified by the state government depending on the location of STPs. Gujarat government had in 2018 declared policy for the use of treated wastewater.
Stating that sewage is being treated as an economic resource, the state government said it plans to sell the treated sewage water. Gujarat plans to reuse 70 per cent of the treated wastewater by 2025 and 100 per cent by 2030. “I am happy to tell you, that this time table is being squeezed and probably we will do it (70%) by 2023,” Gupta said.